Avatar: The Last Airbender Reboot Hits Netflix, Feb. 2024!

Nickelodeon’s hit series “Avatar: The Last Airbender” has a history of being adapted to live-action that many would agree is quite unbecoming of a series widely regarded as one of the best animated shows of all time.

2010’s “The Last Airbender” was, to put it gently, a trainwreck on every possible level, which effectively killed any burgeoning prospects that “Avatar” universe might have had for a live-action future at that point.

Fast-forward thirteen years, and “Avatar” is getting another shot at live-action glory with the upcoming live-action Netflix reboot, also titled “Avatar: The Last Airbender”.

ICYMI, the first trailer for “Avatar” dropped at Netflix’s recent Tudum event, and based on both the scope of the trailer and reactions to it, “Avatar” fans have every reason to expect it to finally be the long-awaited second chance for “Avatar” in live-action!

Netflix’s “Avatar” Showcases Epic Scale

The world of the “Avatar” franchise comprises the Four Nations, namely the Water Tribe, Fire Nation, Earth Kingdom, and Air Nomads.

When the animated “Avatar” series begins, the Fire Nation will launch a conquest of the other three nations, setting up the series as an epic tale, and it seems that it is one that Netflix’s “Avatar” has captured very well.

Each of the Four Nations is glimpsed prominently in the “Avatar” trailer, while their respective cultures and even subcultures like the Earth Kingdom’s Kyoshi Warriors are brought to life with state-of-the-art visual effects, costumes designs, and production values. For “Avatar” fans, that naturally can mean only one thing.

“Avatar” Promises to be the Live-Action Version of the Show We’ve Been Waiting for

While it might seem repetitive for the layman to hear “Avatar” fans lament the failures of “The Last Airbender”, that movie’s smorgasbord of issues cannot be overstated, in everything from its dialogue to its visual effects, costumes, set design, and extremely truncated character development and rehashing of the “Avatar” franchise’s mythos.

Netflix’s “Avatar” already looks however to have completely remedied all those issues with everything seen in its trailer.

Moreover, the Netflix “Avatar” reboot wisely addresses the biggest elephant in the room of “The Last Airbender”, that, of course, being its whitewashed cast playing the Asian-based characters of Team Avatar and the broader Four Nations (the “Avatar” universe having been explicitly intended as a fantastical version of Asia by creators Bryan Konietzko and Michael Dante DiMartino).

Avatar The Last Airbender Zuko

Avatar: The Last Airbender – Zuko

Netflix’s “Avatar” cast is comprised entirely of Asian actors, with both newcomers like Gordon Cormier, Kiawentiio, Ian Ousley, and Dallas Liu as Avatar Aang, Katara, Sokka, and Fire Prince Zuko, along with established actors like Paul Sun-Hyung Lee, Daniel Dae Kim, and Ken Leung as Zuko’s Uncle Iroh, Fire Lord Ozai, and Commander Zhao.

With Netflix’s “Avatar” having done the opposite of the failings of “The Last Airbender” on so many levels, it also seems ready to finally give “Avatar” fans the kind of action they’ve long craved to see in live-action.

The Bending Action Looks Phenomenal

Buckle in for a rundown on “bending”, “Avatar” newbies! In the “Avatar” universe, “bending” is the ability of some to telekinetically control the element of their birth nation, with the bending of each element being harnessed into its own martial art.

The Avatar, in being bonded with the Spirit of Light, is a continually reincarnated individual who is also the only person who can master each element of water, earth, fire, and air, with “Avatar” focusing on the young Airbending monk Aang mastering water, earth, and fire in order to put a stop to Fire Lord Ozai’s conquest of the Four Nations.

This concept made “Avatar” one of the most unique animated series ever made with some of the best animated martial arts fights ever designed.

“Avatar” martial arts supervisor Sifu Kisu also designed each element to correspond to a different martial art, namely Tai Chi for Water, Northern Shaolin for Fire, Hung Gar for Earth, and Baguazhang for Air (with Sifu Manuel Rodriguez also basing the Earthbending of Toph Beifong on Southern Praying Mantis).

While “The Last Airbender” did an overall horrendous job of capturing the finesse and power of element bending seen on “Avatar”, Netflix’s “Avatar” has already left it in the dust just with the trailer alone.

With such shots as Aang toppling a group of Fire Nation soldiers with an air blast to Zuko projecting a fiery blaze from his spinning kicks, the element-based fight scenes of Netflix’s “Avatar” are pulled right from its animated predecessor, and could be every bit the game changer in live-action fight choreography that “Avatar” originally was in animation.

That also does beg the question of where Netflix’s “Avatar” could head after its February 22, 2024 debut.

Could “The Legend of Korra” Be Next?

Following the conclusion of “Avatar” in 2008, the franchise eventually continued in 2012 with the follow-up series “The Legend Of Korra, which picks up 70 years after “Avatar” and focuses on Aang’s Avatar successor, Korra, and ran for four seasons until 2014.

With the resources Netflix has clearly poured into their reboot of “Avatar”, it goes without saying that fans have already begun pondering whether “The Legend of Korra” could follow “Avatar” in getting the live-action treatment on Netflix.

Time will tell on that, of course, but in the meantime, even more “Avatar” fun is also on the way outside of Netflix.

More “Avatar” Greatness is Coming!

“Avatar” creators Bryan Konietzko and Michael Dante DiMartino were initially involved with the development of Netflix’s “Avatar”, but ultimately ended up departing the show due to creative differences. That is an undeniably unfortunate outcome for both the “Avatar” reboot and fans of the franchise.

Following their departure, Konietzko and DiMartino founded Avatar Studios within Nickelodeon, with multiple “Avatar” projects in the works, including a new animated “Avatar” movie, due to be released theatrically in 2025.

In the end, “Avatar” fans are ultimately the big winners with both Netflix and Nickelodeon working on different interpretations of the “Avatar” universe, whilst “Avatar” fans have multiple adventures lying ahead of them, all of which kick off with Netflix’s “Avatar: The Last Airbender” next year!

Avatar The Last Airbender Katara and Sokka

Avatar: The Last Airbender – Katara and Sokka

Netflix’s live-action reboot of “Avatar: The Last Airbender” arrives on February 22, 2024, stay tuned for more info on the new show as it ‘shifts’ in our direction!

Avatar: The Last Airbender” is currently in pre-production and is to set get in front of the cameras soon! Have you seen “Avatar: The Last Airbender” and “The Legend of Korra”? Are you excited to see “Avatar” get another shot at live-action? Let us know in the comments below; Like, share and join in the conversation on Facebook and follow us on Twitter & Instagram!

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Brad Curran

From the earliest days of childhood, Brad Curran was utterly fascinated by martial arts, his passion only growing stronger after spending time living in the melting pot of Asian cultures that is Hawaii. His early exposure developed into a lifelong passion and fascination with all forms of martial arts and tremendous passion for action and martial arts films. He would go on to take a number of different martial arts forms, including Shaolin Ch'uan fa, Taekwondo, Shotokan Karate and remains a devoted student, avid and eager to continue his martial arts studies. Brad is also an aspiring writer and deeply desires to share his love for martial arts and martial arts movies with the world!

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