Neflix’s troubled Avatar: The Last Airbender series has cast its Aang, Katara, Sukko, and Zuto—and found its behind-the-scenes team. When the show was originally announced, fans were excited to hear that A:TLA creators Michael Dante DiMartino and Bryan Konietzko would be involved. But last August, DiMartino and Konietzko announced they were no longer involved in the new project.
Now, Albert Kim is on board as showrunner, executive producer, and writer. Kim was an executive producer on Sleepy Hollow and Nikita, and has also written for Leverage.
Deadline’s news piece about the casting and creative team doesn’t so much as mention the original show’s creators, focusing entirely on what’s new this time around. It quotes a blog post from Kim (the link is broken) in which the new showrunner speaks about the importance of representation in the live-action cast: “This was a chance to showcase Asian and Indigenous characters as living, breathing people. Not just in a cartoon, but in a world that truly exists, very similar to the one we live in.”
Meet the cast of our Avatar: The Last Airbender live-action series! pic.twitter.com/EaPqmuo94e
— Netflix (@netflix) August 12, 2021
And the cast does look great. Gordon Cormier (The Stand) will play Aang, an endearingly distractable 12-year-old who would like to ride every animal under the sun—and also happens to be the Avatar, the master of all four elements, who plays a vital role in his world. Kiawentiio (Rutherford Falls) will play Katara, the last waterbender in her home village, who finds Aang frozen in ice at the start of the original show. Ian Ousley (Physical) will be Sokka, Katara’s sometimes-cocky older brother. And Dallas Liu (Pen15) is Zuko, the troubled, exiled prince of the Fire Nation, who is fixated on capturing the Avatar in hopes it will impress his father.
There’s no news yet on when production will begin, or when we might see our first glimpse of the new Avatar.