Fictional universe in Avatar
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The 2009 American science fiction movie Avatar, directed by James Cameron, is set on the fictional world of Pandora, which is a tropical Earth-like moon of the fictional planet Polyphemus, in the Alpha Centauri system.
List of fauna[change | edit source]
- Direhorse is (Pa'li in Na'vi language) a hexapodal equine-like creature. The Direhorse was conceived and designed by Cameron and Stan Winston Studios. Cameron described the creature as a "six-legged alien Clydesdale with moth-like antennae".
- Great Leonopteryx (Toruk in Na'vi language) is an airborne predator native to Pandora. The fierce beauty and nobility of the leonopteryx gave the species a place in central Na'vi lore and culture. It is celebrated in dance, song, and with elaborate totems that symbolizes both the fear and respect accorded to the creature. The leonopteryx is considered crucial to the Na'vi sense of destiny and interconnectedness. Prior to the events of the movie, it had only been tamed five times, and Neytiri tells Jake that the riders (Toruk Makto) brought peace among the Pandoran tribes. The Great Leonopteryx and the Banshee were designed with bright colors. Page based the colors on Earth's birds, poison dart frogs, and Monarch butterflies, though he altered the patterns so they would not obviously come from Earth's animals.
- Hammerhead Titanothere (Angtsìk in Na'vi language) is a large herbivore with a head shaped like a hammer. The creature, which resembles a cross between a rhinoceros and a hammerhead shark, is angered easily.
- Mountain Banshee (Ikran in Na'vi language) is an airborne predator who lives in mountainous territory on Pandora. Na'vi warriors attempt to bond with a Banshee, a dangerous and required rite of passage. A Banshee bonds to a Na'vi warrior for life. Page spent the most time designing the Banshee for the movie so it would be convincing when it flew or perched. The designer said, "The hardest thing of all was having a Na'vi on top of it and flying it. You had to backwards engineer it. It was like designing and engineering an aircraft." Barlowe, who contributed to the Banshee's design, was influenced by manta rays and skates as well as relatively little-known pterosaurs and plesiosaurs that had "many, unique aerodynamic and hydrodynamic" characteristics. Like the color scheme for the Great Leonopteryx, color schemes based on Earth animals were used for various Banshees, though Page was inspired by Art Nouveau prints to warp the schemes so they would not look familiar to movie audiences.
- Thanator (Palulukan in Na'vi language) is a large hexapodal land predator. Cameron personally designed the creature. Its appearance is similar to a panther; Cameron describes the Thanator as "a panther from hell". The director explained how the Thanator is the most fearsome creature on Pandora, "The Thanator could eat a T-Rex and have the Alien Queen for dessert."
- Viperwolf (Nantang in Na'vi language) is a hexapodal nocturnal carnivore. Cameron described the Viperwolves, "[They are] hairless with shiny skin that looks like overlapped armor. Most disturbing are its paws, which are like leathery hands."
List of flora[change | edit source]
- Helicoradian is a carnivorous plant that has red spiral-leaves. The plants are up to 3-4m tall and, when touched, they curl and collapse into themselves instantly.
- Obesus rotundus is a tree that looks like a puffball tree.
- Pseudocycas altissima is a plant that looks like a tall Earth cycad.
- The Hometrees (Kelutrel in Na'vi language) are great enough to house hundreds of clan members. The trees are honeycombed with natural hollows and alcoves in which the Na'vi sleep, eat, weave, dance, and celebrate their connection to Eywa. Adult Hometrees are more than 150 meters tall, roughly thirty meters in diameter.
- The Omaticaya inhabit a Giant Hometree, standing roughly 460 meters tall. A distinguishable feature of the movie landscape, the tree itself is central to the movie story arc. Like many sacred sites on Pandora, the Giant Hometree sits above a large deposit of unobtanium. It is destroyed by the humans using rockets, which leads to the Na'vi clans' alliance against the humans.
- The Tree of Souls (Vitraya Ramunon in Na'vi language) is a tree where the Na'vi are able to communicate with the biological network that exists throughout Pandora. Cameron described the Tree of Souls as "a big input-output station" and was inspired to design it by bioluminescence that he encountered during night diving.
- The Tree of Voices (Utraya Mokri in Na'vi language) is the most important tree to the Na'vi after the Tree of Souls. It is smaller but its appearance is similar and it too is illuminated. Neytiri tells Jake that it allows the Na'vi to hear the voices of their ancestors. It is destroyed in the bulldozer attack by the humans.
- Woodsprites (Atokirina in Na'vi language) are seeds of the "holy tree", appearing similar to airborne jellyfish.
References[change | edit source]
- "Direhouse". Pandorapedia. 20th Century Fox. http://www.pandorapedia.com/doku.php/direhorse.
- "A Look Into the Making of Pandora for AVATAR". IESB.net. S&S Media Services. December 6, 2009. http://www.iesb.net/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=7872:a-look-into-the-making-of-pandora-for-avatar&catid=41:news&Itemid=71. Retrieved December 27, 2009.
- Anders, Charlie Jane (December 10, 2009). "Those crazy color schemes are from the ocean floor — and Art Nouveau". io9 (Gawker Media). http://io9.com/5423086/those-crazy-color-schemes-are-from-the-ocean-floor--and-art-nouveau. Retrieved December 27, 2009.
- "Hammerhead Titanothere". Pandorapedia. 20th Century Fox. http://www.pandorapedia.com/doku.php/hammerhead_titanothere. Retrieved December 27, 2009.
- "Mountain Banshee". Pandorapedia. 20th Century Fox. http://www.pandorapedia.com/doku.php/banshee_mountain. Retrieved December 27, 2009.
- Kennedy, Gerrick (December 4, 2009). "'Avatar' designer on Jim Cameron, banshees and those nagging 'Delgo' comparisons". Los Angeles Times. http://latimesblogs.latimes.com/herocomplex/2009/12/avatar-designer-asnwers-the-delgo-criticisms-its-so-apples-and-oranges-.html. Retrieved December 27, 2009.
- "Thanator". Pandorapedia. 20th Century Fox. http://www.pandorapedia.com/doku.php/thanator. Retrieved December 27, 2009.
- Maher, Kevin (December 8, 2009). "Avatar: pictures of James Cameron’s fantastic new world". The Times. http://entertainment.timesonline.co.uk/tol/arts_and_entertainment/film/article6947527.ece. Retrieved December 27, 2009.