James Cameron has had a busy 2012. After overseeing the 3D up-conversion on his 1997 film, Titanic, in April, the Oscar-winning director moved his family down to New Zealand to start working on the Avatar sequels. Cameron had planned to shoot both Avatar 2 and Avatar 3 back to back, but the Canadian-born filmmaker now has a good idea when the movies will actually start shooting.
While attending the world premiere of The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey, Cameron was asked about the progress of the Avatar sequels. He jokingly mentioned that it’s “too damn distracting because it’s so beautiful” in New Zealand, but then said that production of Avatar 2 and 3 should start by the end of 2013.
Cameron also mentions to The West Australian that he doesn’t “want to be writing the movie in post production” like he did while making the original Avatar film in 2009, and then added, “I ended up cutting out a lot of scenes and so on and I don’t want to do that again.” So it sounds like we’ll likely get Avatar 2 in theaters by 2015.
Cameron was also asked whether or not the Avatar sequels would be shot with a higher frame rate, like Peter Jackson’s The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey. Cameron is considering the new format if audiences respond positively to Jackson’s new movie. “If there is acceptance of 48, then that will pave the way for Avatar (sequels) to take advantage of it. We charged out ahead on 3D with Avatar, now Peter’s doing it with the Hobbit. It takes that kind of bold move to make change.”