Avatar didn't sweep the Oscar nominations just because of its amazing special effects — it captured the hearts and imaginations of Academy voters because of its world-building. Here's the complete history of the movie's intricate world, from the designers themselves.
We've also got some incredible original concept art, much of which hasn't been seen anywhere else yet.
This is the third installment of our irregular series of interviews with designers and artists who worked on James Cameron's Avatar. The first one is here, and the second one is here. After we did the first article, we kept hearing from more designers who worked on the film and were eager to talk to us, and then they put us in touch with other designers who'd worked on the film too. At this point, we've talked to 17 or 18 people who helped realize James Cameron's vision of Avatar.