Avatar is back in theaters today with an addition nine minutes of never-before-seen footage reinstated back into the original body of the movie. It has also been announced that when the Special Edition versions of the DVD and Blu-ray hit in November, there will be another all-new seven minutes of footage added to what we'll be seeing this weekend, for a version of Avatar that is a full sixteen-minutes longer than what was formerly released this past December.
We know from earlier reports what we're going to see in this new theatrical footage that has been added, but what about the additional scenes being brought back into the DVD and Blu-ray release? In speaking with Oregon Live, James Cameron announced for the first time what, exactly, he was adding back into the upcoming home market version of the Special Edition.
The biggest change will be that he is bringing back the original Earthbound opening of the film, which begins on what has been called a "polluted, dystopian Earth". There will also be at least forty-five minutes of unfinished deleted scenes.
Here is what James Cameron had to say about this impending Blu-ray/DVD release:
"If you buy the box set in November, you can sit down, and in a continuous screening of the film, watch it with the Earth opening. In November, you can buy a box set with all the bells and whistles. It's got like 45 minutes of unfinished deleted scenes that exist in a supplement where you can just play the scenes individually...On the whole Earth opening, the visual effects weren't done, and we had to go back and spend a million bucks or whatever to get those shots done...But you'll be able to watch a 16-minute-longer version of the film that's a nice, flowing, cohesive version of the movie. If you just want to wallow in Avatar for three hours, I can get that for you.
James Cameron went on to describe this all-new opening in detail. Here is what he told Oregon Live:
"It works very well. It just takes a long time to get the movie started. You have to be sort of predisposed to like the movie like a fan, you know what I mean? And then you can sit and you can have a great ride -- a different telling of Avatar. Not inconsistent -- it's just the stuff that happened off-camera. We call it "the Earth opening." It's about 4 1/2 minutes of stuff. And it was in for the longest time. It was very late in the day that we took it out. I walked in one day and said to my two editors, "Guys, I want each of you to cut a new version of the start of the film, Reel 1, that doesn't have any Earth in it at all." And they looked at me like I was out of my mind. And I said, "No -- it's gonna work." They had to figure out the details. I said, "Just grab a couple of things to use as flashbacks, and start it in space when Jake opens his eyes."
To read more from this extensive interview with director James Cameron, be sure to check out the article on Oregon Live.
Avatar Special Edition is in theaters starting this Friday, and the DVD and Blu-ray Special Editions will be in stores this November.