Olympic swimmers mark the release of Avatar: The Way of Water

James Cameron's visually astonishing and sweeping Avatar: The Way of Water promises to overwhelm Cineworld audiences this December. Cameron builds on the mythology seen in his 2009 blockbuster Avatar, uncovering new and teeming corners of the lush planet Pandora.

To celebrate the release of Avatar: The Way of Water, and its myriad aquatic environments, Cineworld is delighted to present its own short video starring British Olympians Matt Richards MBE and Alice Dearing. It tells the story of Matt and Alice's own ‘way of water', juxtaposing their record-breaking work in the pool with the sights and sounds of their time spent at Cineworld as they immerse themselves in IMAX 3D, 4DX and ScreenX.

Matt Richards is 19 years old and won Gold at the 2020 Tokyo Olympics for the men's 4 × 200 metre freestyle relay, an achievement shared with team members James Guy, Duncan Scott, and Tom Dean. The gold was Britain's first in 4 × 200 metre freestyle relay at the Olympics since 1908. Matt was appointed as an MBE in the 2022 New Year Honours for services to swimming.

Alice Dearing founded the Black Swimming Association, a non-profit organisation aimed at championing diversity in swimming across all levels of skill. She also competed for Great Britain in the 10 km marathon swim at the Tokyo 2020 Olympics and is the first black female swimmer to represent Great Britain at the Olympic Games.

You can expect to see the Cineworld short video before the trailers attached to Avatar: The Way of Water. However, since you're here, we're thrilled to present you with a special sneak peek at Matt and Alice's cinematic immersion. Scroll down to take a look.

Now that you've witnessed Matt and Alice's reactions, the time has come to make your own decision. How will you choose to return to Pandora at Cineworld? Here's a breakdown of the viewing formats that will augment and enhance your big-screen Avatar experience.

1. Be engulfed by Pandora's beautiful underwater landscape in IMAX 3D

James Cameron crams the world of Avatar with so much exotic and gorgeous detail that it's impossible to catch it all in one sitting. He's a filmmaker who prioritises movie-going as an all-encompassing experience, meaning that Avatar is therefore tailor-made for the specifications and spectacular qualities of IMAX 3D

Not unlike the actors on the set, the movie is about to plunge viewers headlong into an underwater environment that's as dazzling as it is unpredictable. The home of the Metkayina is crammed with all manner of flora and fauna not yet glimpsed in the Avatar universe, and IMAX will tease out every detail.

IMAX 3D utilises massive screens, a unique auditorium design, lifelike visuals, and heart-pounding precision audio that transforms movie-going from a passive to an active experience. The size of the IMAX 3D screen, averaging 60 feet wide, allows for a larger and more immersive image to be experienced. 

Put simply, you are in the world of Jake, Neytiri and the Metkayina, and the IMAX remastering process promises to make this a big-screen adventure unlike any other.


2. Feel the mist and spray of the Metkayina's home in 4DX 3D

One simply does not sit and watch the Avatar sequel. As mentioned, James Cameron wants this to be as tactile and physical an experience for the audience as possible. So, if you want to feel the sensations of Pandora, from the gentle breezes to the salty ocean currents, don't miss the movie in 4DX.

The unique multisensory experience that is 4DX aligns perfectly with the movie's emphasis on water. Only available at Cineworld cinemas in the UK and Ireland, 4DX evokes the aquatic nature of the storyline with a host of subtle rain effects, which when accompanied by wind, scents and moving seats, further accentuates Cameron's world-building.


3. Be surrounded by Pandoran water and wildlife with the 270-degree experience of ScreenX

Only available at Cineworld cinemas in the UK, ScreenX surrounds the viewer with a 270-degree viewing format, extending a given movie beyond a person's peripheral vision onto the side walls of the auditorium. The end result is truly all-consuming, and if you haven't tried ScreenX before then Avatar is the perfect place to start.

Dive underwater with Jake, Neytiri and their children and be surrounded on all sides by the remarkable detail of the movie's watery landscape. When experienced in 270 degrees, Avatar promises to feel even more overwhelming and breathtaking as all manner of creatures pass your vision and the dazzling interplay between light and shade lurks just beyond your viewing range.

Get a sense of the ScreenX experience in the following clip.


It's nearly time to return to Pandora. Avatar: The Way of Water takes place more than 10 years after the events of the first movie whereby Jake (Sam Worthington) and Neytiri (Zoe Saldana) have been enjoying an idyllic existence with their family of natural and adopted children.

However, the sudden re-emergence of an old enemy compels them to take sanctuary with the underwater Metkayina tribe, presided over by Ronal (Kate Winslet, who reunites with Cameron for the first time since 1997's Titanic).

Resplendent in all manner of tropical detail and colour, as realised by cutting-edge performance capture technology, the Avatar sequel is poised to take your breath away.

Check out the trailer below. Avatar: The Way of Water is released on December 16 so follow us @Cineworld and use the hashtag #MyWayOfWater to share your experience.