In an exclusive interview with Screen Rant, Zoe Saldaña and Sam Worthington elaborate on the emotional turmoil that Neytiri goes through in Avatar: The Way of Water.
Neytiri’s life took a paradigm shift in Avatar after she fell in love with Jake Sully, a spy sent by the RDA to break into the Na’vi clan. Although Jake eventually realized the intentions of the RDA and switched sides, the betrayal was hard to digest.
The movie ended with Jake’s consciousness getting transferred into his Na’vi Avatar body and tying the knot with Neytiri.
The two have since created a happy family, which will be under siege in Avatar: The Way of Water.
In the interview, Saldana and Worthington explain Neytiri’s constant mental struggle concerning her identity. She fought with the entire clan and broke many conventions to woo the ‘human’ she loved. But that comes at a price.
In Avatar: The Way of Water, Neytiri, and her family will be forced to leave home to protect their clan. Neytiri will have to leave her partner and children and join the leaders in the fight. Will she be able to endure it all or implode under the pressure of her own thoughts?
Here is what Saldana and Worthington have to say about it:
Neytiri gets displaced because of the decisions that are made. And so, she goes on a more difficult journey.Sam Worthington
And just dealing with that inner turmoil of an identity that was very well-defined by her ancestry, and it’s been rocked by the choices that she’s made. By choosing this man of another species, having a family with him, but also dealing just with the violation that’s happening on her planet. I think she hasn’t found any resolution about it, and that’s her journey.Zoe Saldaña
In the first movie, Neytiri was next in line to become the Tsahik, the spiritual leader of the Omaticaya after her mother. In Avatar: The Way of Water, she must hold onto her roots and protect her clan from the RDA and the humans.
She has already disrespected the Na’vi culture by choosing Jake. Will this continue to pull her away from the intended path? The creation of this identity crisis in her mind will make life a lot harder for her in the upcoming movie.
The Na’vi have a deep relationship with Pandora through nature, wildlife and Eywa. In Avatar: The Way of Water, the RDA will be hell-bent on destroying Pandora and will have a barrage of new weaponry in their arsenal.
Neytiri will have to take on the mantle of the leader and save her clan at all costs. This can finally force her to open up about the demons in her mind and confront the losses she has had to make and will continue to make in the future.
About Avatar: The Way of Water
Avatar: The Way of Water is an upcoming American epic science fiction film directed by James Cameron and produced by 20th Century Studios. It is the second film in Cameron’s Avatar franchise, following Avatar (2009).
Cameron produces with Jon Landau. Cast members Sam Worthington, Zoe Saldana, Stephen Lang, Giovanni Ribisi, Joel David Moore, Dileep Rao, CCH Pounder, and Matt Gerald are all reprising their roles from the original film, with Sigourney Weaver returning in a different role. New cast members include Kate Winslet, Cliff Curtis, Edie Falco, Brendan Cowell, Michelle Yeoh, Jemaine Clement, Oona Chaplin, Vin Diesel, and CJ Jones.
Avatar 2 revolves around a universal concept of family and follows Jake Sully and Neytiri 14 years after the first film as they focus on protecting their child. However, they are forced to leave their home and explore the different regions of Pandora when an old threat returns to finish what they started. Jake has never faced a bigger challenge.