As Fans Wait For a Disney+ Release, ‘Avatar’ Makes Yet Another Splash Into Theaters

avatar the way of water
Credit: Disney

When the first Avatar film hit theaters in 2009, the revolutionary film broke records and dominated the box office. Over ten years later, Avatar: The Way of Water (2022), has also dominated the box office.

Both films star Sam Worthington (Jake Sully), Zoe Saldana (Neytiri), Stephen Lang (Miles Quaritch), and Sigourney Weaver, so fans were sure to see their favorites on the big screen.


Credit: 20th Century

READ MORE: Audiences Totally Missed This Risqué Detail In ‘Avatar: The Way of Water’

If you wanted to see the Sully Family on the big screen once again, now’s your chance: the Avatar sequel is returning to theaters to celebrate Earth Day (April 22).

Fun fact: this upcoming Earth Day also marks the 25th anniversary of Disney’s Animal Kingdom.

Pandora - The World of Avatar

Credit: Disney

READ MORE: Animal Kingdom’s Pandora-Themed Land Included References to ‘Avatar: The Way of Water’ All Along

However, there’s a certain irony behind the film being released on Earth Day that isn’t going unnoticed by fans and critics alike. Although James Cameron has a great love for the environment, and both Avatar films convey strong themes of conservation, respect, and appreciation for one’s natural world, neither take place on Earth.

Avatar movie

Credit: 20th Century

READ MORE: We’re Willing to Bet You Never Knew This Behind-the-Scenes Fact About James Cameron’s ‘Avatar’

Instead, both films take place almost entirely on Pandora, the fictional moon housing the Na’vi, the alien race, and all the alien creatures. While comparisons can be drawn between Earth and Pandora in a metaphorical sense, many fans and critics find it hard to believe that Avatar: The Way of Water is receiving another theatrical release purely to celebrate Earth Day.

avatar the way of water

Credit: 20th Century Fox

READ MORE: Here’s How You Can Help Disney and ‘Avatar’ In Their Effort to Save Our Oceans – For Free!

Many fans think it’s something more lucrative, such as another opportunity for the film to make more money and garner more attention as Guests wait for the film to drop on Disney Plus (or Disney+).

Wherever you stand on the matter, you can catch Avatar: The Way of Water in IMAX on April 21, 2023.

About Isabella Reimer

Isabella Reimer grew up visiting Walt Disney World and relocated to Central Florida to be even closer to The Most Magical Place on Earth. She earned her Bachelor’s from Florida State University, where she studied Creative Writing and Women’s Studies. Her biggest hobby is bonding with the ikran at Avatar Flight of Passage, and her retirement plan includes becoming the 1,000 Happy Haunt of the Haunted Mansion.