The groundbreaking work by revolutionary director James Cameron, which was revolutionary when it was first published, still inspires today with its technical 3D implementation. The re-release is also intended to prepare for “Avatar 2” – the sequel, which has been eagerly awaited for years, will be released in December.
“Like a dream”
“I read the other day that movies are felt memories. That’s a great description,” says Worthington, who plays paraplegic ex-Marine Jake Sully in the film. In the year 2154, Sully is infiltrated via a special program into the culture of the giant, blue Na’vi around the chief’s daughter Neytiri (Saldana), created entirely by means of motion capturing, whose planet is used by humans as a supplier of raw materials. A film about the overexploitation of nature, about understanding between different peoples, about racism, militarism, greed – the numerous topics have been the subject of treatises and studies for years. Describing the film’s reverberations, Worthington says, “‘Avatar’ feels like a dream caught up in people.”
“I remember now, when I got the call back then – not the call about getting the part, but the call, ‘James Cameron wants to meet you,'” Saldana recalls. “And I also remember how excited and nervous I was. And then it came out: He wants me to be part of his project. The rest was then a day on the playground,” laughs the New Yorker, who was inspired by the film became a star. Since then she has also played leading roles in other film universes: as Gamora in Marvel films such as “Guardians of the Galaxy” or “Avengers: Endgame”.
“Jim set the bar very high”
Worthington jokes: “I just thought: how is this supposed to work? And you’re paying me to play there? Great!” Working with “Titanic” and “Terminator” creator Cameron was what made it so appealing – and it was a special experience: “I like to compare it to a small child,” explains Saldana. “When a child is truly loved, it also makes it easier for them to give that love back later. And that’s what it was like for me to work with Jim (Cameron, ed.) who is so patient and respectful and his shares thoughts with us.”
“He’s a classic storyteller,” adds Worthington, and Saldana agrees. “He knows exactly what he wants and, with his communicative nature, he knows exactly how to get it across to us.” She confirms, half jokingly, “So he set the bar very high for me” in terms of working with other directors. For years, both and a large part of the cast of the first film have been working with the 58-year-old again, “Avatar 2” is to be followed by further sequels.
The film series that is now emerging is Cameron’s heart project: “He has dedicated a considerable part of his life to ‘Avatar’ and to spreading the film around the world,” says Worthington. “He’s totally committed to this story and these films.” And millions of fans worldwide with him.