James Cameron is currently in pre-production for his next two Avatar sequels which are expected to start shooting in 2013. In a recent interview with THR the director says that the production could end up being a Chinese co-production, and explains that there could be Chinese Na'vi.
Within five years, China could easily be as big a gross-revenue market for film as North America, and there are very specific economic incentives for having both Chinese content and Chinese co-production. We are already funded on Avatar 2 and 3, but if we qualify as a co-production, there might be some incentives in the percentage of revenue we can take out of China. We are running the numbers to see if that makes sense.
For Avatar, we can certainly use Chinese actors as performance capture actors because any accent issues will hide within the Na'vi accent. So we can have Chinese Na'vi; [and in the live-action sequences] we can also have Chinese actors who speak English in the film. We are projecting a future in Avatar, and if you project that future out, it is logical that there would be a number of Chinese amongst the contingent on Pandora.
The motion capture parts of Avatar 2 and Avatar 3 will shoot in Los Angeles and the live-action photography will take place in Wellington, New Zealand. As for the visual effects work, that will be completed at the Wellington-based Weta Digital.
What are your thoughts on what Cameron had to say about co-producing the film with China, and the possibility of including Chinese Na'vi? I imagine he'll eventually end up introducing the audience to even more Na'vi races.