James Cameron Bringing The Depth, Wit, And Brilliant Dialogue Of Avatar To A Bookstore Near You

By  · Published on February 18th, 2010

Quick, what’s your favorite part of James Cameron’s epic blockbuster Avatar? If your answer includes any mention of the screenplay, story, or deep and detailed characters then you’re only lying to yourself my friend.

And you’re also about to rewarded for that complete lack of taste and judgment…

One of the producers on Avatar, Jon Landau, gave an interview with MTV and revealed that Cameron is working on a prequel to the film that may be released by the end of this year. But how can that be, you ask, when Avatar took over a decade?! Because, I answer, the prequel won’t be a film… it will be a novel. Since books are simply written words devoid of expensive and painstaking digital effects, an Avatar-based novel only has to focus on the story, characters, and dialogue. By that logic, and using the same standards Cameron applied to the movie’s screenplay, the book can probably make it to stores by the end of the week.

Landau says Cameron is definitely writing the novel himself, and that’s something not too far removed from his usual film-making process. “His first step of writing a script is often in a novella format,” Landau said. “So this is just expanding that, and I think that he’ll be very adept at it.” Asked what a prequel story would cover, Landau said the novel will provide a more thorough foundation of the world.

It would be something that would lead up to telling the story of the movie, but it would go into much more depth about all the stories that we didn’t have time to deal with ‐ like the schoolhouse and Sigourney [Weaver’s character] teaching at the schoolhouse; Jake on Earth and his backstory and how he came here; [the death of] Tommy, Jake’s brother; and Colonel Quaritch, how he ended up there and all that.”

Some fascinating stuff there, no doubt about it. And if the novel sells well enough Landau threatens says they have plenty more “stories that are set before the movie opens and after.” He also provides a possible hint at where the eventual Avatar movie sequel might start…

There might be opportunities in publishing to tell some of the backstory, tell some of the Earth war stories, what went on in Jake’s life before the movie. And we’d have that lead up to the sequel that might take place on Pandora several years after our movie closed.”

What do you think about a Cameron-penned prequel to Avatar? Will the world of Pandora be as enticing without the amazing special effects?

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Rob Hunter has been writing for Film School Rejects since before you were born, which is weird seeing as he's so damn young. He's our Chief Film Critic and Associate Editor and lists 'Broadcast News' as his favorite film of all time. Feel free to say hi if you see him on Twitter @FakeRobHunter.