James Cameron has set Sigourney Weaver to return in the three Avatar sequels that are scheduled to begin production later this year. Weaver joins previously announced cast returnees Sam Worthington, Zoë Saldana and Stephen Lang. She also becomes the second star after Lang to be resurrected for the trilogies after the characters they played died in Hollywood’s highest grossing film ever.
Cameron has long made movies with strong heroines, and that was epitomized when he took over Aliens, the sequel to the film made by Ridley Scott, and established Weaver as one of the great female action heroes.
“Sigourney and I have a long creative history, dating back to 1985 when we made Aliens,” Cameron said. “We’re good friends who’ve always worked well together, so it just feels right that she’s coming back for the Avatar sequels. 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.”
The as yet untitled Avatar sequels will be filmed back-to-back. The release of the first follow-up will be in December 2016, with the second to follow in December 2017, and the third a year later. The films are being produced by Cameron and Jon Landau through their Lightstorm Entertainment. Weaver is repped by UTA and Alan Wertheimer.