Sigourney Weaver
Credit: Everett Collection

Sigourney Weaver’s character died in battle at the end of Avatar, but James Cameron isn’t letting that get in the way of bringing the actress back for the three sequels he begins filming later this year. Dr. Grace Augustine, the idealistic but tough-as-nails scientist who advocated peaceful outreach with the Na’vi, won’t be resurrected. Instead, Cameron has other ideas.

“Sigourney and I have a long creative history, dating back to 1985 when we made Aliens. We’re good friends who’ve always worked well together, so it just feels right that she’s coming back for the Avatar sequels,” the director said in a statement.

“Her character of Grace Augustine, as fans know, died in the first movie, so she’s playing a different and in many ways more challenging character in the upcoming films. We’re both looking forward to this new creative challenge, the latest chapter in our long and continuing collaboration.”

Weaver isn’t the only Avatar actor who will appear in the sequels even though their character perished in the first film. Stephen Lang, who played the scar-faced Marine Miles Quaritch, will also return, as a revitalized version of the same villain. Sam Worthington and Zoë Saldana will reprise their characters in the as-yet untitled sequels, which will be filmed back-to-back. The release of the next Avatar movie will be in December 2016, with the second to follow in December 2017, and the third a year later.

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