Why Avatar rerelease doesn’t have the “hair sex” scene

Cameron Frew
Jake and Neytiri during the hair sex scene in Avatar

If you caught the Avatar rerelease over the weekend and thought, “Didn’t they have sex with their hair?”, you’re not mistaken – here’s why the famous scene isn’t in cinemas right now.

Avatar, still the biggest movie of all time by quite some margin, made a blockbusting return to theaters this weekend, even managing to beat Don’t Worry Darling at the box office.

Ahead of its long-awaited sequel, The Way of Water, releasing in December, the original film has been remastered to mark the occasion, revitalized with 4K High Dynamic Range and 9.1 sound, and returning to IMAX theaters in 3D.

However, viewers have taken to Twitter after catching the film, fearing there’s been some sort of Mandela effect with the “hair sex” scene – there hasn’t, but there’s a good reason it’s not in the rerelease.

Why Avatar removed the “hair sex” scene in the rerelease

It’s as simple as this: it’s the original theatrical cut of Avatar that’s currently in cinemas, as opposed to the extended version.

In James Cameron’s mega-hit, Jake Sully (Sam Worthington) learns how to walk, talk, and fight like the Na’vi, with the help of Neytiri (Zoe Saldana). As their relationship develops, they choose each other as mates under a sacred tree.

In the rerelease, they kiss and get quite intimate, but the scene is brief and it soon cuts to the next morning.

Jake and Neytiri in Avatar
You didn’t imagine it.

You haven’t misremembered the moment when they join ponytails with their horrible tendrils. A few months after the original movie hit cinemas, a special extended edition was released, which included the scene you’re thinking about.

This scene was also included in the extended version on DVD and Blu-ray. You can watch it here.

Many have taken to Twitter to stress they saw the hair sex in the cinema, which they probably did, but it wasn’t the first cut of the movie.


Also, as one user pointed out: “The popular awareness of the hair sex scene in AVATAR means a lot more of you either watched the extended edition on Blu-ray OR went and saw the special edition theatrical rerelease in 2010 than the whole ‘Nobody cared about Avatar’ discourse would imply.”

Avatar is still in cinemas now. You can find out more about Avatar 2 here.