'Avatar: The Way of Water' Is a 'Masterpiece' Say Critics, But Needs a $2 Billion Box Office to Break Even

The much-anticipated sequel had its premiere on Monday night in London.

"Avatar: The Way of Water" is being heralded as a "masterpiece" that is "bigger and better" than the original, according to critics.

The much-anticipated sequel had its premiere on Monday night in London, and after the screening a number of film critics took to Twitter to share their effusive praise for the movie.

"Unsurprisingly, #AvatarTheWayOfWater is a visual masterpiece with rich use of 3D and breathtaking vistas," says Ian Sandwell of Digital Spy. "It does suffer from a thin story and too many characters to juggle, yet James Cameron pulls it together for an extraordinary final act full of emotion and thrilling action."

"Happy to say #AvatarTheWayOfWater is phenomenal! Bigger, better & more emotional than #Avatar, the film is visually breathtaking, visceral & incredibly engrossing. The story, the spectacle, the spirituality, the beauty – this is moviemaking & storytelling at its absolute finest,” writes Fandango critic Erik Davis.

"“AVATAR: THE WAY OF WATER absolutely owns bones. I was slapping my seat, hooting, screaming for the Na’vi to take out every last one of those dang sky people …it’s an Avatar movie: slow start, big build, incredibly involving second act with a ton of world building and cool creatures that blisses you way out, then an hour of screamingly good crystal clear emotionally trenchant action to send you home full and happy,” says David Sims of "The Atlantic."

Those early reactions are good news for James Cameron, who in an interview with "GQ" revealed that when he pitched his idea for an "Avatar" sequel to the studio he told executives that the film would need to make over $2 billion at the box office just to "break even."

Fandango correspondent Nikki Novak, who is in London for the big premiere, tells Inside Edition that Cameron is confident his latest movie can break the $2 billion mark.

"James has said even if you have to get up and use the restroom it’s fine, because you’re going to want to go see ["Avatar: The Way of Water"] again," explains Novak. "He is that confident that people are going to want to rewatch it, and that’s one thing that James is known for and one of the reasons his box offices in the past have been so successful, because he creates films that people want to see again and again, and again."

Only five movies have ever made over $2 billion at the box office, and two of them are directed by Cameron. His 1997 release "Titanic" sits in third place with a box office of $2.2 billion while 14 years after its release "Avatar" remains the highest grossing film of all time with $2.92 billion at the global box office.

Cameron remains tight lipped about just how much it cost to make "Avatar: Way of Water," but "The Hollywood Reporter" estimates somewhere around $350 million. Hundreds of millions of dollars have also already been poured into two additional "Avatar" films that will hit theaters later this decade. And Cameron has a script ready for a fifth "Avatar" film.

"Avatar: The Way of Water," which stars Sam Worthington, Zoe Saldana, Sigourney Weaver, and Kate Winslet, will hit theaters on December 18. 



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