Considering it took James Cameron more than 10 years to realize his epic blockbuster "Avatar", we should be somewhat relieved that the next installment in the planned trilogy will be arriving much sooner.

Unfortunately, "much sooner" isn't next year or the year after. In fact, in a recent interview, Cameron said 2014 is a more likely candidate.

Cameron told The New York Post, "Right now, the thinking is that (films) two and three are going to be done together. They’ll be released separately, probably a year apart or maybe even two, but they’ll be done in a bunch.

"I’m mapping out the story line right now, so there’s a proper arc that plays out over two films, but (it) buttons nicely at the end of two, so you don’t get this horrible second-act Matrix feeling — you know: 'I’ve just sat through a three-hour movie and [nothing] happened at the end!' "

Of course, Cameron being Cameron, you can expect these sequels to offer an even more realistic vision of Pandora and its alien wildlife. This won't be a rushed production. In fact, in an interview with MTV, the director says he's already working on refining the camera system used to shoot the first film's digital characters.

"For example, the characters don't cast shadows on the ground, and sometimes shadows are a very important part of a scene; you compose the shot to the shadow. Next time, we're going to have shadows, interactive volumetric lighting, all the kinds of things we didn't have on 'Avatar.'"

For those needing a fix of Pandora on the big screen before 2014, check out the re-release of "Avatar" this weekend in 3-D and IMAX.

Michael d'Estries ( @michaeldestries ) covers science, technology, art, and the beautiful, unusual corners of our incredible world.