Two decades after making Titanic, Kate Winslet is reuniting with filmmaker James Cameron for the upcoming Avatar 2. Cameron is well-known for his perfectionist persona on set, which can be hard on his collaborators, and he and Winslet famously had a hard time working together on Titanic. In an interview, the actress explained how the dynamic has changed between them this time around.
"It was so wonderful to work with Jim again. Time has changed him. Jim has become a father a few more times over. He is a calmer person. Chilled. You can just feel him enjoying it more this time."
Much of Avatar 2 has been wrapped in mystery so far. What we do know is the sequel will continue the story of the planet Pandora, and the family of Jake Sully, the human soldier who became a member of the planet's dominant species, the Na'vi. We also know that a lot of the story in the sequel will take place underwater, and Winslet described the intense preparation that went into preparing for her role as a 'water person'.
"I had to learn how to free-dive to play that role in Avatar, and that was just incredible. My longest breath hold was seven minutes and 14 seconds, like crazy, crazy stuff. Oh no, actually, I can't. Yeah, I play a water person. I am a water person."
It seems Kate Winslet will be playing a version of the Na'vi species that lives underwater, rather than a member of the human species that come to Pandora desiring to strip the planet of its resources. While James Cameron has remained tight-lipped about the specifics of the plot of the upcoming movie, he has acknowledged that his experiences as a father that Winslet mentioned prompted him to imagine the Avatar sequels in the vein of the Godfather films.
"I've found myself as a father of five starting to think about what would an Avatar story be like if it was a family drama. What if it was The Godfather? So that's what [the Avatar sequels are] - it's a generational family saga. That's very different than the first film. There's still the same setting and the same respect for the 'shock of the new'. We still want to show you things that you haven't even seen or imagined, but the story is very different. It's a continuation of the same characters... but what happens when warriors who are willing to go on suicide charges and leap off cliffs, what happens when they grow up and have their own kids? It becomes a very different story. Now the kids are the risk takers and the change makers."
After a long hiatus, Avatar 2 began filming again recently, while observing strict rules of disinfection and social distancing. Hopefully, the much-delayed project will be finally able to finish production in time to stick to its release date, scheduled for December 16, 2022. The Hollywood Reporter was the first to bring us this fun Avatar 2 tidbit.