It feels pretty incredible to know that we’re about a month and a half away from the release of the first sequel to Avatar, a film that was officially greenlit almost 13 years ago at this point. The long-awaited return to James Cameron’s alien world of Pandora has been through one of the most arduous production processes in the history of Hollywood, with most of the principal photography of Avatar: The Way of Water having occurred way back in 2017. Unsurprisingly, the COVID-19 pandemic played a big role in the subsequent delays and pushed-back release dates, but The Way of Water still felt at times like a film we would never actually see. And now it’s almost here, with 20th Century Studios releasing the film’s first full-length trailer today, which you can view below.
This trailer, like the teaser that preceded it, focuses quite intently on the blue-skinned alien Na’vi people—in fact, there’s not a single human character to be found, aside from some mech-like suits that presumably contain humans. Nor does the teaser give away much in terms of the actual plot of The Way of Water—it mostly just suggests the growing size of Sully’s (Sam Worthington) Na’vi family, most notably in the form of adopted daughter Kiri. The small, official synopsis says only the following:
Set more than a decade after the events of the first film, Avatar: The Way of Water begins to tell the story of the Sully family, the trouble that follows them, the lengths they go to keep each other safe, the battles they fight to stay alive, and the tragedies they endure.
If you’re wondering why the face and voice of Kiri looks so oddly familiar after watching that trailer, it’s because she has an unexpected performer behind it: Sigourney Weaver. Not exactly who one might be expecting to see as a teenage character, but Weaver also played the compassionate Dr. Grace Augustine in the first film. Somehow, one gets the sense that the souls of these characters may be linked in a tangible way.
Regardless, it’s hard to imagine that James Cameron would let audiences down after all this time. Avatar: The Way of Water is scheduled to hit theaters on Dec. 16, 2022, in what is sure to be a major box office event. Until then, you can check out the trailer below.