Will 'Avatar 2' Be Streaming? What to Know About the Release for 'The Way of Water'

Callie (Carlos) Cadorniga - Author
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Dec. 5 2022, Published 5:54 p.m. ET

After being stuck in production limbo for several years, the long-awaited Avatar 2 is finally hitting theaters. The first film was released in 2009 and received widespread praise, with many critics highlighting its use of advanced CGI cinematography at the time. To this day, it still holds the record for the highest-grossing film in history.

The franchise seeks to make another splash with the release of Avatar: The Way of Water, which is already one of the most expensive films ever.

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But film releases have changed considerably within the past two years alone, even before taking into account the 13-year gap between the first film and the second. Thanks to the COVID-19 pandemic, many studios experimented with releasing feature-length movies on streaming services to coincide with their theatrical runs. It was a move that paid off for many moviegoers, albeit at the literal expense of box office success. That being said, will Avatar 2 be streaming on release?

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Will 'Avatar 2' be streaming?

Avatar: The Shape of Water takes place over a decade after the events of the first movie. When a new human threat attacks the native inhabitants of the planet, Pandora, human-turned-Na'vi Jake Sully (Sam Worthington) seeks the help of a water-based tribe to rise up against this new evil. Zoe Saldaña reprises her role as Neytiri and Sigourney Weaver returns as a new character named Kiri. The film also stars Kate Winslet, Edie Falco, and Stephen Lang.

When the first Avatar was released in theaters, 3D movies were the latest craze, an Avengers movie was a glorified pipe dream, and Avatar itself was decided not owned by Disney. Nowadays, the landscape of theatrical releases has shifted drastically. It's not unreasonable for audiences to have the choice between watching a new blockbuster in theaters or from the comfort of their own homes. What does that mean for Avatar: The Way of Water?

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As of this writing, there are no official plans for the film to be released on any streaming platform alongside its theatrical run. Considering that the film needs to make an absurd amount of money to simply break even on its ~$400 million budget, it makes sense for the studio to want as many moviegoers in theaters as possible. The film's three-hour runtime might be a big ask for some, but there won't be many options for you to see outside of heading to the movies.

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Will 'Avatar 2' be streaming on Disney Plus?

As for when the film will be streaming, we can at least safely assume that Avatar: The Way of Water will be coming to Disney Plus sometime in the future. Given that the first film is currently streaming on the Disney-based platform, a streaming release for the second Avatar film shouldn't be far behind.

Many studios have opted for a 45-day waiting period for new movies to appear on streaming platforms. Based on that, we can expect Avatar 2 on Disney Plus in late January 2023.

Avatar: The Way of Water arrives on Dec. 16 only in theaters.

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