The Avatar Sequel Crossed the $1 Billion Threshold in Two Weeks

The sequel is halfway to breaking even by director James Cameron's projections.

Commuters walk past a large commercial advertisement banner promoting the movie Avatar: The Way of Water
Consumers are still interested in the Avatar franchise. SOPA Images/LightRocket via Gett

Avatar: The Way of Water passed the coveted $1 billion revenue mark in just 14 days, making it the fastest movie to do so this year, according to Variety. The only other films to reach this benchmark in 2022 were Top Gun: Maverick, which took 31 days to hit $1 billion in sales, and Jurassic World Dominion, which took more than four months.

This achievement affirms the continued interest in the Avatar franchise 13 years after the original film premiered, but the sequel is still a long way from breaking even. Director James Cameron told GQ the film would have to make more than $2 billion to be profitable—making it one of the highest grossing films of all time. In the first two weeks, the film made $300 million domestically and $700 million overseas.

Industry box office hasn’t fully recovered from theater closures and a shift towards streaming during the pandemic. In 2019, nine movies passed the $1 billion mark as compared to three this year. The film’s 2009 predecessor is the highest grossing film to date with more than $2.9 billion in sales. Analysts project the sequel will make between $1.6 million and $1.9 million, according to Collider.

The Walt Disney Company might have spent upwards of $400 million on the film, not including the marketing budget, according to the Hollywood Reporter. Disney promised a total of four sequels, costing $1 billion total.

The Avatar Sequel Crossed the $1 Billion Threshold in Two Weeks