Wes Studi as Eytukan in 'Avatar.'

James Cameron Casting 'Avatar 2'; Seeks Native Actors


Casting information has been issued for Avatar 2, the sequel to director/writer/producer's James Cameron's hugely successful 2009 film, and according to Native entertainment journalist Roscoe Pond, the filmmakers may want to fill some roles with American Indian talent.

It makes sense, seeing as the Na'vi, the famous blue inhabitants of the planet Pandora, were an Indigenous population whose homelands—hometrees, really—were threatened by invaders seeking precious natural resources. The analogy between the Na'vi and Native Americans (and other indigenous populations all over the world) was hard not to catch. Additionally, accomplished Cherokee actor Wes Studi had a major role in the original film as Eytukan, leader of the Omaticaya clan of Pandora and father of the protagonist's love interest—Neytiri, played by Zoe Saldana. Studi seems unlikely to return as his character was killed—but stranger things have happened in science fiction. (For a dead guy, Alec Guinness' Obi-Wan Kenobi sure got a lot of screen time in The Empire Strikes Back and Return of the Jedi.)

The casting information is posted to Acting-Auditions.org, and is very clear on one point: Those interested in being in the film must have a New Zealand work permit.

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Jan Whitebear
Jan Whitebear
Submitted by Jan Whitebear on
The first Avatar was my favourite movie of all time! I cried so much every time I watched it (at least 8 times!), it was so beautiful, yet so heart wrenching because I could clearly see the distinct analogy! Even my young granddaughter, who was just 11 at the time we first went to see it, noticed!