Despite spending a significant amount of his career building the Avatar universe, James Cameron says he might bow out of directing the saga’s final films.
“The Avatar films themselves are kind of all-consuming,” Cameron told Empire magazine ahead of the upcoming release of Avatar: The Way Of Water. “I think eventually over time—I don’t know if that’s after three or after four—I’ll want to pass the baton to a director that I trust to take over, so I can go do some other stuff that I’m also interested in. Or maybe not. I don’t know.”
Cameron has promised at least five films in the Avatar franchise, which he explained encompasses so much of his worldview. “Everything I need to say about family, about sustainability, about climate, about the natural world, the themes that are important to me in real life and in my cinematic life, I can say on this canvas,” he said, adding that Avatar’s fourth entry is especially powerful.
“Movie four is a corker. It’s a motherfucker,” he said. “I actually hope I get to make it. But it depends on market forces. Three is in the can so it’s coming out regardless. I really hope that we get to make four and five because it’s one big story, ultimately.”
Elsewhere in the interview, Cameron also spoke to the lengthy runtime of his forthcoming Avatar sequel, which he said would be well over three hours, and demanded patrons stop “whining” about a movie’s runtime in the age of binging.
“I don’t want anybody whining about length when they sit and binge-watch [television] for eight hours,” Cameron added. “I can almost write this part of the review. ‘The agonizingly long three-hour movie...’ It’s like, give me a fucking break. I’ve watched my kids sit and do five one-hour episodes in a row.”
He also encouraged viewers to use the restroom during his film.
“Here’s the big social paradigm shift that has to happen: it’s okay to get up and go pee,” he said.
Revisit the trailer for Avatar: The Way of Water, which hits theaters on December 16, below.