While promoting the TV show “Trauma,” Cliff Curtis who plays Fire Lord Ozai in Paramounts’ “The Last Airbender” spoke to the press at the Television Critics Association summer press tour saying, “I’m kind of like the Darth Vader character for that [The Last Airbender] franchise.”
Based on the popular Nickelodeon series “Avatar: The Last Airbender,” M. Night Shyamalan’s upcoming fantasy movie is seemingly more of a reinterpretation inspired by Star Wars than a faithful adaptation of the animated series.
“I think that M. Night’s a really interesting filmmaker, and when he spoke to me about it, he said that one of the most influential films he ever saw was Star Wars,” Curtis said. “For him, this was his Star Wars that he wanted to make, so I thought that’s a really interesting way to have a look at this kind of franchise.”
According to Curtis, he has not watched the original show for reference or research. “I haven’t watched the TV series to get confused by it,” Curtis said. Instead, he will take directions and pointers directly from the vision of Shyamalan. “I wanted to take his lead on what way he wanted to take the franchise. He’s had to condense, I don’t know how many episodes, but two or three years’ worth of television episodes into three movies.”
Curtis adds that his character “The fire lord loves fire,” and that “He’s responsible for it. He’s sharing it with the rest of the planet.” (Eh????)
When speaking about his costume, Curtis had nothing but high praises, despite it deviating heavily from the Asian inspired costume of the original show. “Outstanding, the most beautiful costume I’ve ever had in my career, actually.”
“It’s sort of like a cross between Roman and kind of Greek, [a] gold, Roman and Greek military/samurai military [uniform]. It’s really, really beautiful.” (Sokka slaps forehead)