Avatar Creator James Cameron Explains Why The 3D Movie Continues To Be A Gripping Cinematic Experience

James Cameron reveals why he believes Avatar is so popular and how new fans will finally be able to experience the film the way they were meant to during the Avatar Rerelease press conference.
Avatar rerelease

Avatar, the most successful blockbuster of all time, will be in theaters once again in only a couple short weeks. Avatar initially came out in 2009, 13 years ago not only bringing an imaginative science fiction fantasy story to fans, but new breath taking technology. Avatar has managed to capture audience’s hearts for over a decade and has grown beyond the screen, with Pandora – The World Of Avatar at Walt Disney World, which allows fans to step into the world of Avatar. However, this franchise continues to grow with multiple sequels on the horizon, the newest Avatar: The Way Of Water hits theaters at the end of this year.

The Illuminerdi had the opportunity to attend the Avatar virtual press conference for the film’s rerelease later this month. The press conference included stars Sam Worthington, Zoe Saladna, Sigourney Weaver, Michelle Rodriguez, Stephen Lang, and writer, director, producer James Cameron.

(L-R): Sam Worthington as Jake Sully and Stephen Lang as Colonel Miles Quaritch in Twentieth Century Fox’s AVATAR. Photo by Mark Fellman. © 2009 Twentieth Century Fox. All Rights Reserved.

During the press conference James Cameron reveals why he believes Avatar touched so many people when it was initially released and how it will with a new generation of fans as it hits theaters once again. Cameron also revealed why it is so important for Avatar to be in theaters once again specifically because it will give younger fans a chance to finally experience the film the way it was meant to be.

“It’s been 12 years since the release and so basically if you’re kind of under 22 or 23 years of age its very, very unlikely that you’ve seen the film in a movie theater. Which in a way means you kind of haven’t seen the film. We authored the film for the big screen, for the giant screen, and 3D. And now we’ve remastered it in 4K and high dynamic range and some 48 frame per second sections in the film. It’s looking better than it ever looked, even back in its initial release. And there’s so many people out there, a whole new kind of generation of film fans coming up.

Even if they like the movie on streaming or Blu-ray or however they saw it, they still haven’t really seen the movie the way we intended it to be seen. And we just watched the film recently when we finished the whole remastering process and it kind of blew us away and it’s hard to say with any degree of humility, but we were really impressed with how the movie looked, just the physical experience of the film. And we’re just really excited to share that with people that have never seen it in a movie theater.”


Given the technological and visual marvel that is Avatar, it makes sense that Cameron wants everyone to have the chance to fully experience the movie the way he intended. With so many huge franchises taking over the box office today including the MCU, Star Wars, and more, it is amazing that Avatar has managed to hold the title of most successful movie of all time for over a decade. During the press conference, James Cameron shared why he believes Avatar managed to capture audience’s hearts when it was first released and how it will continue to do so once it hits theaters again later this month.


Avatar rerelease
(L-R): Jake Sully (voiced by Sam Worthington) and Neytiri (voiced by Zoe Saldana) in Twentieth Century Fox’s AVATAR. © 2009 Twentieth Century Fox. All Rights Reserved.

“I think any film is only as good as the people in it and you see in front of you five individuals who brought their heart and souls to that film, sometimes in very different ways. I mean Zoe’s challenges were different from Michelle’s challenges and [Stephen Lang’s] challenges and so on, but I think people respond to people. But in this particular case with Avatar they’re responding to people sometimes that are ten feet tall like Sam’s character, Zoe’s character. Technically Zoe I think you’re nine foot two as Neytiri. So, you’re also in a world and and you’re these other worldly characters, somebody who played these otherworldly characters with big eyes and cat tails and all that sort of thing.

So, I think it took us out of our day-to-day problems. I took us out of our day-to-day kind of political discourse and the chaos and disorderliness of real life. And it took us to a place where yes there’s conflict. There’s all sorts of important things going on, but it’s all through a lens of fantasy or science fiction. So, from whatever culture you’re in whether you’re in China or Japan, Europe, North America it didn’t matter people saw some universality of their lives in these characters through this lens of science fiction.

And then I think it was the physical execution, the finish of the film, that I think in the first few minutes people just gave up trying to figure out how it was done because we mixed so many techniques it took us years to develop and so they just kind of surrendered to a sense of immersion in a world, in a fantasy. And you’re willing to go on a fantasy if you can relate the the main characters and I think Sam’s character took us on that journey.

That Sam taking us on that journey. And Sigourney’s character kind of set the frame for it, made it all seem somehow rational and [Stephen Lang’s] character made it all seem rational in a very different way from a very different perspective. I think people found universals of human experience that they could relate to.

And there’s one other thing to which is that I think when we’re kids we just innately love nature, we love animals, we love being out in nature. As our lives progress we become more and more away from nature and I think society at large anywhere in the world is suffering from nature deficit disorder of some kind, to some degree. And I think that movie puts us back into that childlike wonder about nature, about nature’s grandeur and complexity and beauty.”


Avatar brings science fiction, fantasy, humanity, and nature together to culminate in a true cinematic experience. With breathtaking visuals, astounding technology, and stories that capture hearts and imaginations it shouldn’t be a huge surprise that audiences have connected with Avatar and that James Cameron wants to continue exploring these characters and this world he has created. Fans will have the chance to experience Avatar in theaters once again before the sequel adds to the popular sci-fi fantasy tale.

Avatar will be rereleased in theaters September 23, 2022. Avatar: The Way Of Water is scheduled to hit theaters December 16, 2022. Are you a fan of Avatar? Are you excited to see Avatar in theaters again? Are you looking forward to Avatar: The Way Of Water? Leave your thoughts in the comments below or on our social media and check back with The Illuminerdi for more Avatar.



Caitlin Tyrrell

Caitlin Tyrrell

Features Manager & Producer with The Illuminerdi. Caitlin has a deep love for storytelling of every kind. She is a huge fan of television, animation, and film, but Star Wars, the MCU, and Critical Role hold a special place in her heart.