Avatar (2009)

 ●  Hindi ● 2 hrs 42 mins

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When his brother is killed in a robbery, paraplegic Marine Jake Sully decides to take his place in a mission on the distant world of Pandora. There he learns of greedy corporate figurehead Parker Selfridge's intentions of driving off the native humanoid "Na'vi" in order to mine for the precious material scattered throughout their rich woodland. In exchange for the spinal surgery that will fix his legs, Jake gathers intel for the cooperating military unit spearheaded by gung-ho Colonel Quaritch, while simultaneously attempting to infiltrate the Na'vi people with the use of an "avatar" identity. While Jake begins to bond with the native tribe and quickly falls in love with the beautiful alien Neytiri, the restless Colonel moves forward with his ruthless extermination tactics, forcing the soldier to take a stand - and fight back in an epic battle for the fate of Pandora.

Cast: Sam Worthington, Zoe Saldana

Crew: James Cameron (Director), Mauro Fiore (Director of Photography), James Horner (Music Director)

Rating: U/A (India)

Genres: Action, Adventure, Fantasy, Sci-Fi

Release Dates: 18 Dec 2009 (India)

Tagline: Return to Pandora

Hindi Name: अवतार

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Did you know? When Sully reassures Mo'at (the shaman) that he is "empty", it refers to his life being empty. The term "jarhead" is applied to Marines referring to their traditional 'high and tight' haircut, and is used by Dr. Augustine when Sully is entering the Avatar link for the first time. Read More
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Executive Producer
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Story Writer

Camera and Electrical

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Music Director
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Costume and Wardrobe

Film Type:
Feature Film
Spoken Languages:
Colour Info:
Sound Mix:
Dolby Digital, DTS, Sonics-DDP, Sony Dynamic Digital Sound
Sony CineAlta F23
Frame Rate:
24 fps
Aspect Ratio:
2.35 : 1
Converted to 3D
Return to Pandora
Enter the World
Jake walks up to the Tree of Souls to pray to Eywa with his ponytail down his back normally. Jake kneels before the tree, with the ponytail in the same spot. Jake reaches down for something, the shot changes, and the pony tail appears in his hand. This was likely done to match Sam Worthington's performance as he was not holding it as he approached the tree, and it would look unnatural for him to do so, being at odds with the motion capture data.

In the first battle sequence, Jake is seen shooting his weapon upwards, towards a helicopter. However, in the next sequence, the helicopter is shown being hit, but the bullets are coming down, opposite from the direction Jake shot them.

In the nightclub scene on Earth when Jake is thrown out into the street, you can see his legs move and stiffen into a bent position (which are supposedly paralyzed) in anticipation of landing on the ground.

Jake Sully pulls a blanket over Grace Augustine in the scene where they are flying north in the mobile link-up trailer after Grace is shot and leaves it folded at the top. The next shots alternate showing the blanket flat with no folds and the blanket with folds.

In the scene where the Na'vi are attempting to move Grace from her human body to her Avatar body, after she has died and one of the Na'vi moves to check for life in her Avatar, you can see her eyes twitch even though she is supposed to be dead.

Factual Mistake
A large mining machine, a bucket wheel excavator [BWE], is seen during the shuttle landing sequence. It is shown operating incorrectly, with the descending part of the wheel against the rock. A BWE operates with the ascending part of the wheel against the rock, so the spoil can fall into the buckets.

Factual Mistake
Any robot in Avatar is always standing up and will remain static until its operator gives it a movement command. However, when Neytiri kills colonel Miles Quaritch his robot falls to the ground as if it had been killed.

Factual Mistake
When first approaching Pandora, the moon and its host planet are shown in orbit around a single star. The system in question, Alpha Centauri, is in fact a binary system (with two stars).

In the scene where Jake is looking at the photographs of the Na'vi on the refrigerator, the photographs themselves are 3D. This is an invention which exists since 1940 and is called lenticular printing. We can only assume that, like much of the technology in the movie, the quality of those prints has advanced by 2154.

The helicopter-like aircraft makes the sound of an ordinary helicopter - this is not correct: high-speed framed propellers produce an entirely different, quite unique buzz-like, smoother noise at a higher pitch. However, we know that they are operating in an atmosphere which is entirely different to Earth's (humans have to wear masks) and lifting an aircraft in gravity which is different to Earth's (it is stated that the humans have to work out in the low gravity), so we can't really make any comment on what these propellers should sound like.

When Selfridge lectures Grace in his office about the corporation's purpose on Pandora (mining 'unobtainium') he closes with the Spanish expression "Comprendo?". This is grammatically incorrect as it would mean "Do I understand?". Addressing Grace, he should have said "Comprende?" (Do you understand?). However, his language mistake shows his lack of appreciation for other cultures.

The first part of the credits are shown over panoramic views of Pandora. Most of these shots are recycled from the movie, and reversed left to right to make it a bit less obvious. One in particular was taken from Jake's ikran first flight sequence, but with Jake and the ikran removed. But you can still the ikran's shadow pass over the rocks.

When Jake's late brother, Tom, is uncovered, he's played by Sam Worthington. In the next shot of Tom being covered again it's clearly someone else.

In the scene where Jake lands on Pandora for the first time, when all other personnel have gotten off the transport ship it is revealed that Jake is paraplegic. When he gets up from his seat into his wheelchair, after lifting his legs from the seat with his arms and putting them in place on the wheelchair, you can see him moving his left leg a bit backwards (without touching it).

When Jake first tries to convince the Na'vi not to fight, and Tsu'tey shoves him, Tsu'tey's eyes are colorless and gray. In the scenes before and after this, however, his eyes are clearly yellow.

As Jake is pulling his legs into the linking machine for the very first time, we see Grace's hands near his legs as if moving to help him. However in the next shot she is few feet away and then moves to help lift Jake's paralyzed legs.

Audio/Video Mismatch
In the scene where Jake first meets Neytiri and is trying to thank her, he grabs her arm, however, the sound effect for grabbing her arm isn't in sync, as you can hear it a couple seconds before he does grab her arm.

Audio/Video Mismatch
When Quaritch is battling Jake, we hear him say the words "come on" shortly before he puts on his oxygen mask. Even though he says the words, we hear the word"on" without his lips moving, as he reaches for the lever to release the hood of the AMP robot.

Character Error
During one of Jake's video logs, Grace can be seen working on an experiment in the background. In the process, she draws up some liquid in an Eppendorf pipette. However, in the process of transferring the liquid to its intended vessel, she inverts the pipette, which would severely damage it.

During the shot where Quaritch says to Jake "That's called taking an initiative son", Jake's hands are rested up on the hologram table. In the next shot where Quaritch says "I wish I had ten more like you", Jake's hands are down at his sides.

In the scene where Parker is shown playing golf on the indoor golf course in RDA, the first time he hits the ball, there are two other balls lying on the course side by side. In the next shot, two are distant from each other and in the shot after that, they are in their original position.

Jake is reviewing the structure of the home tree with Quaritch and Selfridge around the rotating 3-D map. When Jake makes a comment about the Na'vi studying him, his watch reads 2:19. Selfridge makes a comment about how the tree is sitting right over the richest Unobtanium deposit. When the camera cuts back to Jake his watch now displays 2:53.

In the colonel's robot there is a rear-view mirror. When we see the robot from the outside, it is very close to his head. But when we see shots from inside the robot, there is plenty of room around his head and we don't see the mirror.

When Quaritch is scolding Jake for making out with a Na'vi, Jake moves his head to the right. In the immediate next angle, his head is straight.

In the scene where Jake wakes up from his link and Grace asks him, "Is the avatar safe?" and he replies, "Yeah Doc, and you are not gonna believe where I am," her hand is on top of his shoulder. But as the camera angle changes back and forth her hand switches to the side of his upper arm and back to the shoulder without time to have made the move.

When Jake is recording his first video log entry, he moves the recording camera around a little to get a better view of his face, and is looking directly at a screen to his right to see if he's centered his face correctly. In the very next shot, he is staring straight forward at the camera.

When connecting with the Mountain Banshee for the first time, Jake's hair switches from being over his right shoulder to being over his left between shots. (His hands are on the Banshee the whole time so he had no chance to change it.)

When Seze first comes out of the tree, if the viewer watches carefully, he/she can see Neytiri's ponytail being flung over her left shoulder, indicating that it would be hanging down her front, but in the next shot it was hanging down her back.

When the colonel is in the robot asking Jake to report to him, in one scene a red disconnect flag is hanging off the robot's leg, but when the colonel starts to walk, the flag is gone.

When Jake follows Neytiri to thank her after the first time they meet, Neytiri is carrying her bow and an arrow in her right hand. After knocking him down, and after Jake tries to thank her, for a few seconds on screen the arrow disappears from her hand. A Few moments later, the missing arrow returns to being carried by Neytiri in the same hand that has been holding her bow all along.

When Parker Selfridge wants to explain the situation (the 'Blue Monkeys') to Jake and asks someone to operate the hologram showing the layout of the landscape he says stop at sector '12' (Hometree), but when the scene cuts to a closeup of Jake the yellow hologram readout clearly reads 'Sector 128'.

When Jake lands at the Tree of Souls, with Toruk. He has no dagger in the sheath on his chest. A few shots later, he has his dagger back. This is an impossibility as Jake lost his dagger earlier.

Mo'at stabs Jake with the arrow to check his blood. In the next shot, she licks the blood again.

As the dragon gunship takes off to join the formation for the finale battle it can be seen with a total of eight white missiles on eight weapon pylons; four on either side. Later on it only has four missiles on only four weapon pylons; two on either side.

In the scene right after the destruction of home-tree, when the people in the link room cancel the link in progress and Jake Sullys Avatar body goes limp, his Avatar is lying on his back with his head facing toward the left side of his body. Later, when the whole crew is able to escape the jail cell and move the mountain side base, Jake links back up with his Avatar and his head is facing straight up.
The cigarette smoked by Sigourney Weaver is completely CGI.

The common spirit of Pandora where every creature is constantly connected to each other and the planet itself is based on the concept of Gaia described in Isaac Asimov's novel 'Foundation's Edge' (1982).

James Cameron, known for being tough on set, allegedly kept a nail-gun on set that he would use to nail cell phones, that had the misfortune of ringing, to a wall above the exit sign.

Chris Pine auditioned for the lead role and said that it was his worst audition ever.

The cap that Norm Spellman wears during his first trip into the Pandoran jungle has Braille symbols on it that represent "#1969", or "Number 1969", the year that humans first landed on the moon.

The book Grace picks up in the abandoned school is called 'The Lorax' by Dr. Seuss. Like the plot of the film the book is about a mystical forest full of beautiful trees and mystical creatures that are destroyed by man's lust for ever growing industry.

The first completely digitally shot movie to win the Oscar for Best Cinematography.

The RDA (Resources Development Administration)'s private security force members all wear French military rank badge. Colonel Miles Quaritch ('Stephen Lang') wears the rank badge of a French Colonel. When Trudy Chacón (Michelle Rodriguez) breaks Sully and Angustine out from jail and flies them to the avatar link outpost, the woman alerting Quaritch is shown wearing the 3 ribbons of a French captain.

Jake's atrophied legs were prosthetics cast from the legs of a real paraplegic. Sam Worthington's real legs were tucked into the wheelchair and digitally removed in post-production.

The cigarette that Sigourney Weaver's character 'smokes' is computer generated.

In James Cameron movies, allies to the main characters often have Catholic references. In Aliens, this ally was called 'Bishop'; in The Abyss, it was 'Monk'. In 'Avatar', Sigourney Weaver plays a character called Grace Augustine. Saint Augustine was a Catholic monk who brought Christianity to pagan England, and became Archbishop. One manner of address for an Archbishop is 'Your Grace'.

The whooping and cackling sounds made by the wolf-like predators on Pandora are actually real spotted hyena calls.

Jake Sully's initials (J.S.) are the same as John Smith, a central figure in the historical and often romanticized story of Pocahontas. Avatar shares many similarities with the Pocahontas story in plot and theme. Like John Smith, Sully is a member of an invading force who falls in love with a tribal princess, after learning her customs.

Mo'at, the spiritual leader of the tribe, is referred to by the title "Tsahik". This name sounds remarkably similar to the Hebrew "Tsaddik", meaning an individual of outstanding virtue and piety. The term is often applied to an especially knowledgeable interpreter of Biblical law and scriptures.

In the scene where Jake Sully is in prison, his back is to the camera and you can see the back of his wheelchair. The brand of wheelchair he is in is "Grunt", which is another term for a Marine infantryman.

In the final battle sequence, Neytiri has a white hand print on her chest as part of her warpaint. It has five fingers, indicating that it is Jake's hand (avatars have five fingers while Na'vi only have four).

Sully and Neytiri only meet face to face at the end.

In the scene that introduces the concept of the tree of souls to the viewer, Grace remarks that outsiders are forbidden to go there, but that she would "die to get samples." This turns out to be an unfortunately prophetic figure of speech as later, she is allowed to go to the tree of souls because she is dying. Her first words upon arriving are, "I need to get samples..."

Grace Augustine says to Quaritch, "Or what, Ranger Rick, you going to shoot me?" Which, of course, is what he eventually did.

Stephen Lang has hinted that Colonel Quaritch could return for a sequel: "You think those two arrows in my chest are going to stop me from coming back? Nothing's over so long as they've got my DNA."

When Jake is examining his ponytail, Dr. Augustine states, "Don't play with that, you'll go blind." This is a common phrase that is taught to adolescent boys (referencing their genitalia) to discourage them from masturbating. It is revealed later in the film that the Na'vi use their ponytails to mate.

In early December 2005, a casting call for the female lead was posted on the website of Mali Finn Casting. It erroneously identified the movie as James Cameron's Battle Angel.

Michael Biehn was considered for the role of Col. Quaritch. James Cameron rejected him because he'd already cast Sigourney Weaver, and he didn't want people to think it wasAliens all over again.

Sigourney Weaver plays a James Cameron persona for her character in this film. Sigourney stated in an interview, "I teased him because to me I'm playing Jim Cameron in the movie as this kind of brilliant, approach-driven, idealistic perfectionist. But that same somebody has a great heart underneath. So I have to say I was always kind of channeling him."

James Cameron originally planned to have the film completed for release in 1999. At the time, the special effects he wanted increased the budget to $400 million. No studio would fund the film, and it was shelved for eight years.

The movie is 40% live action and 60% photo-realistic CGI. A lot of motion capture technology was used for the CGI scenes.

James Cameron was convinced that CGI effects had progressed enough to make this film when he saw Gollum in The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers.

Promotional items were shipped to cinemas under the name "Project 880".

In the UK, the film was shipped in two parts, under the code name "Redbird". Reels 1-5 were delivered first; 6-10 came the following day.

To help the actors prepare for their roles, director James Cameron took the cast and crew to Hawaii, where they spent their days trekking through the forests and jungles and living like tribes (building campfires, eating fish, etc), in order to get a better sense of what it would be like to live and move around in the jungle on Pandora, since there would not be any actual jungle sets to aid and guide the actors and crew. Zoe Saldanaeven dressed up as a warrior during these journeys, complete with an alien tail symbolic of the one her character has in the movie. These hikes were only done during the daytime, though; the cast and crew spent their nights at a Four Seasons hotel.

Avatars have eyebrows and five digits per hand or foot while the Na'vi only have four and no eyebrows. The Avatars are also broader in the chest and arms, appearing more 'muscular'.

In much of the movie, Sigourney Weaver's avatar wears a Stanford tank top. Weaver attended Stanford in the early 1970s.

The spiral-shaped, retracting creatures Jake encounters early in the film are giant versions of Christmas Tree Worms, a marine invertebrate commonly kept in reef aquariums.

The Na'vi language was created entirely from scratch by linguist Paul R. Frommer. James Cameron hired him to construct a language that the actors could pronounce easily, but did not resemble any single human language. Frommer created about 1000 words.

Though he is not credited in the film, several locations look very similar to paintings by English surrealist Roger Dean, most notably his works "Floating Islands" and "Arches".

In the Thai version, Jake Sully is a "Navi" who becomes a "Na'vi". The Thai word for Marine is "Na-vig-ga-yo-tin", but the translator shortened it to make the voice-over sync.

The year is never stated, but the video log shows that the year is 2154. The final battle takes place during August 2154, 200 years from the date of James Cameron's birth.

The actors playing the Na'vi had cameras attached to their head so that they filmed close-ups of their faces. Dots painted on their faces allowed motion-capture software to record their facial expressions, providing a 'framework' from which the CG artists worked.

"Unobtainium" is a humorous term used mainly in the aerospace industry. It describes a material that is perfect for an application, but does not exist, is extremely expensive, or violates the laws of physics. Its chemical symbol is Uo. "Unobtainium" is also a general concept term used by sci-fi enthusiasts for any fictional substance that is needed to build a certain device that is crucial to the plot of a sci-fi story. "Unobtainium" is featured in the movie The Core, where the earth-boring vessel called the "Virgil" has a hull made from unobtainium to help it withstand the massive pressures inside the Earth's core. "Unobtainium" is also an anti-gravity element in the online multi-player video game "Skyrates."

In Korean, "Na'vi" is spelled like "nabi", the Korean word for "butterfly", and a very common name of cats.

When Sully reassures Mo'at (the shaman) that he is "empty", it refers to his life being empty. The term "jarhead" is applied to Marines referring to their traditional 'high and tight' haircut, and is used by Dr. Augustine when Sully is entering the Avatar link for the first time.

The first (and only, as of 2010) science fiction feature film by James Cameron that does not involve or mention nuclear weapons.

Colonel Quaritch mentions that being on Pandora made him feel "like a shave-tail Looie." "Shave tail" was a term originally used in the 19th century among U.S. cavalry regiments. Newly assigned cavalry troopers were given horses with a shaved tail, to let other troopers know that the rider was dangerously inexperienced, and should be given extra room to maneuver during training. "Looie" is a nickname for lieutenant, the lowest ranking, and least experienced, rank among U.S. Marine Corps officers.

Matt Damon and Jake Gyllenhaal were the studio's first choice to play Jake Sully, butJames Cameron decided to cast an unknown Sam Worthington in the lead role.

James Cameron's first directorial feature film since Titanic.

Each frame (1/24 of a second) of the CGI scenes took an average of 47 hours to render.

The film reached the US$500 million dollar mark in 32 days, beating The Dark Knight's previous record of 45 days. James Cameron's previous film, Titanic, took 98 days to reach the US$500 million dollar mark.

"Avatar" is Sanskrit for "incarnation". It is used extensively in Hindu scriptures to refer to human incarnations of God.

According to James Cameron, the Na'vi are blue to create a conceptual parallel with traditional Hindu depictions of God (e.g., in the forms of Vishnu, Shiva, Rama, Krishna, etc.), but also because "I just like the color blue."

Ey'wa, the deity of the Na'vi people, is a mixed-up pronunciation of "Yahweh", the God of the Hebrews. It also means "yes" in Arabic.

Became the highest-grossing film of all time on January 26th, 2010, with a final worldwide gross of US$ 2,779,404,183. The previous record-holder was Titanic, also written and directed by James Cameron, with a worldwide gross of US$1,843,201,268.

The concept of a network of trees in which minds of the deceased continue to exist appears in several novels of the "Ender" series by Orson Scott Card, most prominently in "Speaker for the Dead". Just like in the movie, the trees in the novel are sacred to the native (remotely humanoid) inhabitants, who tolerate the presence of a small human colony on their world until cultural misunderstandings lead to conflict.

James Cameron disclosed on The Tonight Show with Conan O'Brien that he began working on preliminary drafts of his movie as early as the mid 1990's. Because his visual concepts were so avant-garde, the technology required to consummate his vision was not then yet available. Not until 2005 was he able to proceed with viable script scenarios.

The word "na'vi" in Hebrew means prophet. A na'vi is a visionary or someone who communicates directly with God. Its plural, nevi'im, also refers to the prophetic books of the bible, which include "Judges," "Kings," and "Isaiah."

Jodie Foster was considered for the role of Dr. Grace Augustine.

The first movie to be shot with a 3D camera, to be released in 3D, and released in IMAX 3D to be nominated for the Best Picture Academy Award

According to Sam Worthington, he was invited to the casting via a phone call, and he knew nothing about the script, nor even told the director's name and Sam was disappointed at first, thinking it was "another waste of time".

Sam Worthington said in an interview that it was easier for him to master the Na'vi language than the American accent.

In the original draft Jake's original name was Josh while Neytiri was named Zuleika.

When Trudy (Michelle Rodriguez) refers to them needing to fly VFR what she is referring to is the Visual Flight Rules, where a pilot, accurately enough, needs to see where they're going.

According to Jake's video logs, the entire film (on Pandora) takes place over a 96-day period. The first log is dated 05/19/2154 and the last 08/24/2154 - 3 months and 5 days later.

All animals on Pandora have six limbs, except for the humans and Na'vi.

The first in a proposed trilogy.

At the time of auditioning, Sam Worthington was living in his car.

James Cameron wanted an unknown actor to play Sully, because it would give the character a 'real' quality. The guy you want to have a beer with, who ultimately becomes the leader that transforms a whole world.

To appease 20th Century Fox's fears, and remembering the harrowing experience of Titanic and its production overruns and costly delays, James Cameron promised to forgo his director's fee if Avatar flopped.

The film's landscapes were in part inspired by the famed Huangshan Mountain in China.

James Cameron has mentioned Roger Dean as a possible influence on the landscapes.

The multiple breathing orifices seen on the larger animals of Pandora were inspired by the air intakes on the sides of sports cars.

The joystick and throttle used to remote-control the bulldozer is a set of modified Saitek X52 Pro. Those are designed to control airplanes in flight and combat simulator programs.
Movie Connection(s):
Dubbed from: Avatar (English)