Though her character died in the massive battle at the end of the first Avatar, Sigourney Weaver has agreed to feature in the not one, not two, but three sequels to James Cameron’s 2009 movie.
In direct contrast with the script for the first Avatar–which critic Tom Huddleston compared memorably to the dinosaurs in Jurassic Park–Cameron’s statement on the addition of Weaver to the cast is equal parts elated, cryptic, and coy:
Her character of Grace Augustine, as fans know, died in the first movie, so she’s playing a different and in many ways more challenging character in the upcoming films. We’re both looking forward to this new creative challenge, the latest chapter in our long and continuing collaboration.
It’s of course possible that by “in many ways more challenging” Cameron is referring to Weaver playing the ghost of her own character. She does, after all, have some experience with resurrection, and with the paranormal.
Weaver is the fourth member of the main Avatar cast to agree to make the sequel trilogy: co-stars Sam Worthington, Zoë Saldana and Stephen Lang have all signed on as well. And Lang, you might recall, also died at the end of the first Avatar. That’s two dead characters back to life in the same series of movies, at the same time. James Cameron is either as ambitious as the scope of his expensive, technologically-driven films would lead you to believe…or as unimaginative as the plots, character arcs, dialogue, and names of things in those same films would also have you believe.
The Avatar sequel trilogy begins production this year. They’ll be released in theaters every Christmas, Lord of the Rings-style, from 2016 to 2018.