James Cameron has confirmed that he will be shooting three sequels to Avatar simultaneously.
Josh Friedman (War of the Worlds) will write one screenplay, while Rick Jaffa and Amanda Silver (Rise of the Planet of the Apes) will pen a second, and Shane Salerno (Salinger, yet to be released) will write the third.
Production will begin next year, with a planned release date of December 2016 for the first of the three films. Each subsequent sequel will follow yearly thereafter.
Cameron says, “Building upon the world we created with Avatar has been a rare and incredibly rewarding experience. In writing the new films, I’ve come to realize that Avatar’s world, story and characters have become even richer than I anticipated, and it became apparent that two films would not be enough to capture everything I wanted to put on screen. And to help me continue to expand this universe, I’m pleased to bring aboard Amanda, Rick, Shane and Josh — all writers I’ve long admired – to join me in completing the films screenplays.”
The deal to keep Cameron working on the sequels at Fox means he won’t be involved in Sony’s Cleopatra with Angelina Jolie.