James Cameron says ‘Avatar 2’ is ‘more emotional’ than original

Not literally, just his love for the ocean.

It’s evident in his upcoming film, “Avatar: The Way of Water,” the sequel to his Oscar-winning 2009 hit film.

Cameron spoke with CNN’s Jason Carroll about how the film, which will debut in theaters in December, is different from the original.

“I think it’s very emotional,” Cameron said of the sequel. “I think it’s more emotional than the first film. I think it focuses more on character and relationship dynamics than the first film did, but it definitely delivers on the spectacle.”

“Avatar” is being re-released in theaters on Friday, and Cameron said he’s excited about it.

“There’s a whole generation that can only watch it on streaming, or blue ray if people even still do that, so it was an exciting prospect to get people back into the theater,” Cameron said. “And now it’s more timely than ever because theaters have taken such a beating in the last couple of years.”

He is obviously referring to the way movie theaters have struggled during the pandemic.

“Avatar” is the highest-grossing film of all time, having taken in more than $2.8 billion at the box office. Entertainment industry observers are watching closely to see if Cameron’s sequel can draw people back to Pandora — and into theaters — once again.

“We’ve banked a lot on this idea of ​​a franchise or a saga that spans multiple films and the film itself is very expensive to make. And so while we can make a lot of money, we can’t​​​​ be profitable and you don’t do something that isn’t profitable for very long,” Cameron said.

The new film is inspired by the director’s fascination with life in the ocean.

“I love the oceans,” he said. “I was passionate about the ocean before I even met an ocean. I learned to dive in rural Canada.”

The actors in “Avatar: The Way of Water” had to adapt to acting underwater and he said that stars Kate Winslet and Sigourney Weaver could hold their breath for six or seven minutes after the training.

Revisiting the fictional Na’vi in ​​a new story is a thrill for Cameron, even as he continues to celebrate the first film.

“‘Avatar’ was a unique beast in its time because it set out to create a world and then you live in that world,” he said. “We never pulled back on the throttle the whole time.”