Avatar: The Way of Water already earned $2 billion making it the sixth highest-grossing film of all time, which means James Cameron now has three movies that have grossed over $2 billion at the box office. But, while this is an amazing feat, one of the film's stars literally one-upped Cameron.
Actor Zoe Saldaña has achieved one of the rarest feats in Hollywood. The Avatar and Marvel star is the first actor to appear in four movies that have each earned $2 billion at the global box office. Saldaña starred as Neytiri in the James Cameron Avatar franchise, specifically the original Avatar ($2.9 billion) and Avatar: The Way of Water ($2 billion). Meanwhile, she also appeared as Gamora in Marvel’s Avengers: Infinity War ($2.052 billion) and Avengers: Endgame ($2.7 billion).
Avatar: The Way of Water breached the $2 billion mark this weekend shortly after overtaking Tom Holland’s Spider-Man: No Way Home for sixth place all time.
The Avatar sequel was one of the most expensive movies to produce with an estimated budget between $350 million and $400 million. Cameron previously stated that Avatar: The Way of Water needs to be one of the fourth or fifth highest-grossing films just to break even. But, now that Avatar 2 is a certified box office hit, Cameron has the greenest of lights as far as developing more Avatar films go.
As for Saldaña, her movies have earned a total of $13 billion. She's currently second all-time for female actors, just behind fellow Marvel and Avengers star Scarlett Johansson’s $15.2 billion. Saldaña may overtake Johansson she is slated to appear in three more Avatar films with each expected to earn as well as the previous two entries into the series.
The actor is also set to appear in Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3 later this year which should also be one of the biggest films of the year. Unfortunately, it may be Saldaña’s final appearance with the original Guardians of the Galaxy with Dave Bautista already confirmed to be leaving the MCU after.
Saldaña recently shared she's open to not returning as Gamora in the MCU. "I can never say no to anything, but that green makeup? I wouldn't be upset if it didn't happen again," the actor said. "I miss Gamora but I don't miss 3:30 a.m. calls and five-hour makeup sessions and trips to the dermatologist afterwards." But, she may be involved with James Gunn and DC Studios in the future after the DCU creator recently stated that he may be working with the cast of Guardians of the Galaxy again, citing his preference to casting actors that he has worked with in the past.
Ultimately, Saldaña feels lucky to be part of the most profitable franchises in movie history, saying:
I feel grateful and like the luckiest girl in this town knowing that I was invited to join films with special directors in a special cast and they resonated with people so much so that we get a chance to come back again and come back another time. If anything, I've reaped all the benefits of that, I've gained friends. I still have mentors that I call and I lean into.
Fans of Zoe Saldaña can check her out in Avatar: The Way of Water in theaters or they can also wait for Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3 to premiere on May 5.