The Last Airbender didn’t do M. Night Shyamalan any favors with the critics. The film seemingly fell flat on its face, which is strange considering how popular the show was, not to mention a successful director took the reins. However, 13 years after the release of the first film, is there likely to be a second?
Potential release date
Many people have said they don’t believe the Last Airbender 2 should be released. The original struggled and some fans on Reddit believe the damage has already been done. Despite this, M. Night Shyamalan has ambitions to make the film but wants to release one of his other ideas first.
However, he has written the script and is pleased with the first draft, which is uncommon for him but this suggests that a release date is being considered. While the film has not even begun production yet, it is likely that it is going to be several years until it is released. Even if production started this year, it would take around three years to create and wouldn’t be released until 2027.
The good news for fans is Avatar: The Last Airbender (TV series) is set to be released on Netflix on February 22, 2024 and will consist of eight episodes. In addition, the animated version of the franchise will air on October 10, 2025 as reported by winteriscoming.net.
Why did The Last Airbender Struggle?
The film had a big budget, which doesn’t guarantee success but what really caused it to turn into a disaster? The critics did not look favorably on the film for various reasons.
To begin with, the film was deemed to be confusing. The whole film was underpinned by the cartoon series but Shyamalan put his spin on it. The dialogue made it difficult for viewers to understand what was happening, particularly those who were not familiar with the original series. The alarm bells should have been ringing as the early trailers didn’t have any dialogue.
The confusion with the film was put down to adults not knowing who the film was aimed at? Was it for young teens, young adults, children or everyone? In fact, it was made for children under the age of ten. Shyamalan was pretty adamant that he was not going to change the film so that it was suitable for a wider audience, simply because the film should belong to children and that was a compromise he was not willing to make.
Finally, the way in which the film was produced was altered during the process. The production team realized that a large chunk of the film would have to be made using special effects and green screens. This is as far away from the original ideas of Shyamalan as you could get, especially when he wanted it filmed in stunning locations.
Therefore, the film was re-budgeted with a lot of the money going to industrial light and magic. The filming locations changed to the point where they were then filming in areas surrounding Pennsylvania. As if that wasn’t enough to throw the film off track, novice directors were then brought in by producers to take care of the effects process.
So, now it’s clearer why the film was deemed a flop from the beginning. It seems as though Shyamalan’s original ideas were overlooked and that could be the problem. He has stated that he wants to stick to the contracted three films, so perhaps he has learned from earlier mistakes. This could mean that The Last Airbender 2 could be worth watching.