The producer of Avatar: The Way of Water has been telling Empire magazine more about what we can expect in the way of sea creatures in the highly-anticipated and long-awaited sequel. These include tulkuns – which are 300 foot long whale-like creatures – and skimwings, which the Na’Vi use in battle.
“The idea was to create a creature that was on the scale of Pandora,” producer Jon Landau tells Empire in the upcoming issue. “A tulkun is, like, 300 feet long. They are a sentient species and as intelligent in their own way as the Na’vi are in theirs.” For comparison, blue whales are 70-100 feet long. The tulkun can be glimpsed in Avatar 2’s first teaser, released at the start of May.
Also glimpsed in the trailer is the skimwing, seen swimming into battle in the teaser’s final moments. As Landau explains, it’s “like a giant flying fish but keeps its tail in the water – its tail is its propulsion. The Metkayina [water tribe] and all the reef people use them as their military mounts when they’re going into combat. They can go 60 miles per hour for endless periods of time.”
The ilu can be seen on the Flight Of Passage ride at Walt Disney World’s Pandora: World Of Avatar. “The ilu is the water equivalent of a direhorse,” says Landau. “They are more playful than skimwings.”
Obviously the emphasis is on water in the Avatar sequel, with Cameron promising stunning above-water and under-water footage. Cameron has been working for a decade to push the technology forward for the Avatar sequels and is emphasising the theatrical experience.
Avatar: The Way of Water will be released on December 16, 2022. While we wait, check out our guide to the best science fiction movies.