Netflix’ ‘Avatar: The Last Airbender’ Sets Creative Team And Cast
Netflix’s live-action Avatar: The Last Airbender series has finally found its showrunner following the departure of original series creators Michael Dante DiMartino and Bryan Konietzko. Albert Kim (Sleepy Hollow, Nikita) is officially taking over the helm of the television show, which is adapted from the beloved Nickelodeon series.
In addition to his showrunner duties, Kim will also be the show's central writer. Dan Lin (The Lego Movie, Aladdin), Lindsey Liberatore (Walker) and Michael Goi (Swamp Thing) are set to executive produce, with Roseanne Liang, Goi and Jabbar Raisani directing.
The series has also found its Aang, the 12-year-old airbending prodigy who serves as the heart of the Avatar story, in Gordon Cormier (The Stand). Waterbender Katara will be played by Kiawentiio (Rutherford Falls), with Ian Ousley (Physical) portraying her older brother Sokka. Crown Prince of the Fire Nation Zuko will be played by Dallas Liu (Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings, Pen15).
“Authenticity is what keeps us going, both in front of the camera and behind it, which is why we’ve assembled a team unlike any seen before,” Kim wrote in a blog post for Netflix (via The Hollywood Reporter). Kim originally discovered the Avatar series through his young daughter, and got “hooked” on the show's immersive world-building and deep, sophisticated themes.
Much of the criticism for M. Night Shyamalan’s movie adaptation The Last Airbender was centered on the lack of Asian representation among its cast. Kim’s Netflix series won’t make the same mistake. “This was a chance to showcase Asian and Indigenous characters as living, breathing people,” Kim wrote. “Not just in a cartoon, but in a world that truly exists, very similar to the one we live in.”
Kim also revealed that the new show will expand and build upon the world of the original, with “surprises for existing fans” as well as first-time Avatar viewers.