‘Avatar’ star Sam Worthington reveals he blew James Bond audition: ‘I had no idea what I was doing’

Sam Worthington could have been the iconic 007 if only he had nailed the audition.

In a recent interview with Variety, the “Avatar” star went into detail about how he had missed out on playing the legendary British Intelligence officer, James Bond. After Pierce Brosnan finished his tenure as Bond, producers were looking for a younger actor, and after the success of “Avatar,” Worthington was put on the list of finalists to play the role.

Worthington traveled to London for the audition, where he met with producer Barbara Broccoli, and asked to replicate a scene from the 1963 Bond film “From Russia With Love,” starring Sean Connery.

“I could play Bond as a killer, but I couldn’t get the debonair down for the life of me. The suit did not fit,” he explained. “ I had no idea what I was doing.”

Sam Worthington admits he didn't know what he was doing during his audition for James Bond.

Sam Worthington admits he didn’t know what he was doing during his audition for James Bond.
(Photo by Axelle/Bauer-Griffin/FilmMagic)

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The role of Bond ultimately went to Daniel Craig, who played the spy in 2006’s “Casino Royale,” up until 2021’s “No Time To Die.” Although Worthington didn’t get the part, he said he learned a lot about what goes into creating, and sustaining, a successful franchise.

He compared his experience with Bond producers to working with James Cameron on “Avatar,” saying, “They are so detailed and meticulous” about the material and will do anything to protect it. He further explained that the creators have “done all the research,” and speaking specifically about Cameron said, “there’s nothing you can ask him that he doesn’t have an answer for.”

“Avatar” was first released in 2009 and quickly became a worldwide phenomenon. It broke many box office records and went on to become the world’s highest-grossing film of all time, making $2.789 billion, surpassing Cameron’s other hugely successful film, “Titanic,” which made $1.84 billion.

The success of the first film came with the promise of many sequels to come, the first of which, “Avatar: The Way of Water,” premiered earlier this month. The film also stars Zoe Saldana, who reprised her role of Neytiri from the first movie, as well as Kate Winslet, Edie Falco and Stephen Lang. 

"Avatar: The Way of Water" also stars Sigourney Weaver, Kate Winslet and Zoe Saldana.

“Avatar: The Way of Water” also stars Sigourney Weaver, Kate Winslet and Zoe Saldana.
(Photo by Dave J Hogan/Getty Images)

In the sequel, Worthington’s Jake Sully has started a family with Saldana’s Neytiri but is forced to uproot them from their home in the jungle and move to the water tribes, when a new threat of war with the humans emerges. There, his family are forced to learn the way of the water tribe.

The third installment of the franchise is expected to premiere in December 2024, and during an appearance on “The Tonight Show starring Jimmy Fallon,” Worthington said that filming on part three and four has already begun.

“We’ve filmed about 80 percent, 90 percent of three. We’re still owing some scenes,” he explained. “And in Four, we did a few scenes, because the kids were aging out, so we have to do it before they get a bit older.”

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Cameron also confirmed that much of the third and some of the fourth films have already been filmed, telling Entertainment Weekly that he doesn’t want the actors to look obviously older than the children they are meant to be playing. 

Worthington and James Cameron revealed that much of the upcoming two "Avatar" sequels have already been filmed.

Worthington and James Cameron revealed that much of the upcoming two “Avatar” sequels have already been filmed.
(Photo by Chung Sung-Jun/Getty Images)

“Otherwise, you get–and I loveStranger Things”–but you get the “Stranger Things” effect, where they’re supposed to still be in high school [but] they look like they’re 27,” Cameron said. “You know, I love the show. It’s okay, we’ll suspend disbelief. We like the characters. But, you know.” 

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While it is unclear how many sequels there will be, during the same interview, producer Jon Landau explained that “each movie is going to introduce audiences to new clans, new cultures on Pandora,” and those characters will continue to be “a part of the ongoing evolution” of the story.

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