Nickelodeon has started to lay the groundwork for an "Avatar Airbender universe" that will feature multiple series and movies.In an interview with Deadline, Nickelodeon president Brian Robbins revealed that the network is in the very early stages of planning an expansion of the Avatar: The Last Airbender that will consist of multiple projects across a variety of mediums. He kept the rest of the details under wraps for now, though he did say that they could potentially be ready to unveil their plans "very soon."
"We are in the early stages of developing and exploring what we are calling an entire Avatar Airbender universe," Robbins said. "Mike [DiMartino] and Bryan [Konietzko] are hard at work, and I think that universe will encompass definitely a theatrical film, animation, certainly multiple TV series and probably multiple films. I think we will be ready very soon to tell the world what is coming first but we are not there yet because we're in early stages of creative development."Last month, Nickelodeon announced the launch of an all-new division dedicated to creating new series and movies based in the world of Avatar: The Last Airbender and The Legend of Korra. Avatar: The Last Airbender creators and executive producers Michael DiMartino and Bryan Konietzko were named as the leaders of the new division, which they officially called Avatar Studios.
Avatar Studios' is expected to debut on Paramount+, Nickelodeon platforms, and unspecified third-party platforms, as well as in cinemas. "We are excited about filling our own platforms today," Robbins explained further. "We will strategically license context to other places for different reasons but mostly our focus is on filling our own platforms starting with linear TV."
The first project from the studio is set to be an animated theatrical film that is scheduled to start production later this year. No further details were given about the first project out of the gate, though DiMartino and Konietzko commented on the franchise's expansion, saying, "there are still many stories and time periods in Aang's world that we are eager to bring to life."The 10 Best Avatar: The Last Airbender EpisodesThe original animated adventure series concluded with a widely lauded two-hour television movie in 2008, which we regard to be one of the best series finales of all time. Netflix added all three seasons of Avatar: The Last Airbender to its library in May of last year, while The Legend of Korra arrived on the platform for US subscribers in August.
Netflix also has a live-action adaptation of ATLA in the works, however, original series creators Michael Dante DiMartino and Bryan Konietzko departed the project last June, citing creative differences as the reason for their exit. Executive producer Dan Lin and his production company Rideback remain attached to the series, along with Nickelodeon.
Adele Ankers is a Freelance Entertainment Journalist. You can reach her on Twitter.