Avatar: The Last Airbender creators tease “new stories” for anime series
The Last Airbender’s original run finished back in July 2008, and since then the popularity of the anime has only exploded. More recently, Avatar’s cult status has only been helped by the re-release of the Nickelodeon series on Netflix — it’s even breaking major streaming records.
Despite its ever-growing popularity, however, Avatar fans have only been treated to one new series in The Last Airbender’s world; in 2012, Nickelodeon ran four seasons of The Legend of Korra, before it was canned ahead of Season 4’s online release.
There’s also been a number of comic books, printed by Dark Horse Comics, a short prequel novel series, and the notorious 2012 film adaptation the fandom wants to pretend was never made. Avatar has never released a third anime series though.
All that could be set to change, with a new teaser from the show’s original creators: there’s “a lot of potential for new stories” in the 18-year-old anime world, Konietzko and DiMartino said, and they’re “definitely” eager to tell them if they can.
Konietzko admitted to Polygon the pair would “absolutely” love to return to do a third series in the world of Avatar: The Last Airbender. There’s still “a wellspring of creativity and storytelling” in the franchise, he said, which could well build into new Avatar spinoffs in the future.
“Mike and I built this fantasy world out of things we love… we set out to make shows we would want to watch,” he said. “It doesn’t encompass everything I want to say and do as an artist, [but] it’s a wonderful place to come back and create within.”
DiMartino added the creators have already got a few ideas for Avatar spinoffs bouncing around in their heads. It’s just a matter of finding “the right way” to actually get them onto the small screen.
“There are many seeds we planted through both series [Avatar and Korra] and in the graphic novels that could be explored,” the story editor teased. “The Avatar universe is a big place, and has a long history. There’s a lot of potential for new stories.”
The question we’re left with here at Dexerto then is simple: what would potential new Avatar spinoffs look like? We’d love to see more of the time between Last Airbender and Legend of Korra — who doesn’t want more Aang, Katara, and the gang?
There’s also DiMartino’s tease that the world has a “long history.” What’s more likely is the pair would wind back the clock; Aang was the 182nd Avatar, which means there’s a hefty chunk of old stories to tell just about former Avatars.
One thing that definitely won’t be happening, however, is the rumored Last Airbender fourth season that would have starred Zuko and Azula. There was “never going to be a season 4,” Konietzko said, “not from us, not from Nickelodeon.”
He added, “Mike and I planned A:TLA to be a three-season arc as far back as our initial pitch in 2002, and in 2008 we finished the story we set out to tell.”
Konietzko and DiMartino would certainly have the time to helm any new spinoff project they want to offer up too; the showrunners recently departed Netflix’s live-action remake of their original Avatar: The Last Airbender series.
Despite the Avatar creators’ exit from the project, Netflix released a statement confirming they will continue on ahead with the 2020 project without their input.