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James Cameron’s Avatar nets another $30 million at theaters, 13 years after its original release



James Cameron’s Avatar nets an additional $30 million at the theater, over 13 years since its original 2009 release.

Image: 20th Century Fox

The remastered rerelease of James Cameron’s Avatar is set to earn Disney an additional $30 million in global ticket sales since last week, ranking domestically in third place at the box office behind Don’t Worry Darling and The Woman King.

The 4K HDR version of Avatar was rereleased to theaters in the US on Friday, September 23rd, after the original 2009 movie was quietly pulled from Disney Plus in order to encourage people back to the theater and build hype for its upcoming sequel, Avatar: The Way of Water.

Avatar was rereleased to theaters to build up hype for its upcoming sequel, Avatar: The Way of Water

Comscore estimates that the rerelease of Avatar brought in $20.5 million internationally and $10 million in the US, bringing the total earnings across all releases to $2,877,897,339, according to Box Office Mojo. The movie already ranks as the highest-grossing film of all time, just ahead of Avengers: Endgame, so these additional profits only stand to strengthen its position.

Around 93 percent of domestic ticket sales were for a 3D screening, up from a 74 percent 3D viewership for the original opening weekend of Avatar in 2009. These numbers bode well for Cameron’s push for 3D viewership for Avatar: The Way of Water, though by comparison, only 10 percent of viewers watched the recently released Thor: Love and Thunder in 3D, according to data shared by Disney.

A viral TikTok video where one user admitted to mistaking her booking of the remastered original for Avatar: Way of Water also features comments from several theater workers who claim that many others were also duped. This confusion is unlikely to be responsible for the success of the rerelease, however, given that both tickets and marketing material clearly listed the movie as a rerelease of the 2009 original.

The Avatar rerun was originally set to be a two-week engagement, but results from its opening weekend could see it stick around for a while longer. If that does occur, then the extension is likely to be short so as to avoid clashing with its long-awaited sequel. Avatar: The Way of Water, the first of four sequels to the original film, is set for international release on December 14th, followed by a North American release date of December 16th.

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