Not to be confused with James Cameron’s blockbuster “Avatar” franchise, the upcoming films are based on “Avatar: The Last Airbender,” the anime-influenced TV series about a boy who can manipulate water, earth, fire and air. The popular animated show aired on Nickelodeon from 2005 to 2008 and inspired a spinoff, titled “Legend of Korra,” as well as an upcoming live-action show on Netflix.
Paramount, who made the announcement at Annecy International Animation Film Festival, did not share plot details about the forthcoming trilogy.
Lauren Montgomery, who worked on “Avatar: The Last Airbender,” is directing the still-untitled film, the first of three standalone stories that are in the works. “Avatar: The Last Airbender” co-creators Bryan Konietzko and Michael DiMartino will produce the “Avatar” movies with Eric Coleman.
The films are in development under the company’s Avatar Studios banner, which was formed in February 2021. The division is designed to create original content spanning animated series and movies based on “Avatar: The Last Airbender” and “The Legend of Korra.”
“As original creators Mike and Bryan expand the ‘Avatar’ universe with us, we’re keeping it all in the family with Lauren bringing the same kind of expert, beautiful work she did on the original series to her new directing duties on the forthcoming theatrical,” said Ramsey Naito, president of animation & development at Paramount Animation and Nickelodeon Animation.
Latifa Ouaou, executive VP of movies and global franchises for Paramount Animation and Nickelodeon Animation will be overseeing development on the film, alongside Jason McConnell, VP of animation at Nickelodeon Animation & Paramount Animation.
Other upcoming Paramount Animation titles include “Paws of Fury: The Legend of Hank” (opening in theaters in July), “Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Animated (set for release in 2023), “Paw Patrol: The Mighty Movie” (debuting next October) and untitled “Transformers” and “Smurfs” movies.