AVATAR: THE WAY OF WATER Stars Sam Worthington And Kate Winslet Share Very Different Underwater Experiences

As the title suggests, Avatar: The Way of Water will take us into Pandora's oceans, and stars Sam Worthington and Kate Winslet had very different experiences shooting those scenes. Read on for details...

Avatar: The Way of Water splashes down into theaters this December, and while we expect filmmaker James Cameron to push the boundaries of 3D technology, it's the underwater action we're particularly curious about. Behind-the-scenes photos have shown that cameras rolled in a massive 900,000 gallon tank, but what did the cast make of their unique surroundings?

Sam Worthington, who returns as Jake in the Avatar sequel, tells Empire (via SFFGazette.com) that he found the whole experience a little daunting.

"It’s the hardest thing I’ve ever had to do," the actor admits. "You’re dealing with the restrictions of freediving, the constraints of motion capture underwater, and you’re trying to keep an emotional journey going while you’re innately struggling with the fear of dying."

Kate Winslet, who is no stranger to working in water after collaborating with Cameron on Titanic, was just pleased to beat her co-stars when it came to holding her breath the longest. "Seven minutes and 14 seconds, baby!" she enthuses, noting that "the most amazing thing for me as a middle-aged woman was to learn something not just new, but superhuman!"

As for Cameron, he clearly feels that the only way to make this movie was to throw his cast into the deep end. "It was just so compellingly clear it could only be done in water," the director tells the magazine. "Besides, the movie is called 'The Way Of Water.' It’s not called 'The Way Of Dry For Wet.'"

We're intrigued to see how this sequel turns out, and whether these underwater scenes live up to the hype. That first teaser received glowing reviews (especially from those who saw it in 3D), and it definitely sounds like Cameron has found a way to deliver visuals unlike any we've seen before (sorry, Aquaman!)

Set more than a decade after the events of the first film, Avatar: The Way of Water begins to tell the story of the Sully family (Jake, Neytiri, and their kids), the trouble that follows them, the lengths they go to keep each other safe, the battles they fight to stay alive, and the tragedies they endure.

Directed by Avatar helmer James Cameron and produced by Cameron and Jon Landau, Avatar: The Way of Water stars Zoe Saldana, Sam Worthington, Sigourney Weaver, Stephen Lang, Cliff Curtis, Joel David Moore, CCH Pounder, Edie Falco, Jemaine Clement, and Kate Winslet.

To whet audiences' appetites, Disney/20th Century Studios will re-release Avatar in theaters on September 23. As for Avatar: The Way of Water, that arrives in theaters worldwide on December 16.

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