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Avatar: The Last Airbender star addresses people’s concerns about Netflix’s new live-action series
Featured Image Credit: Netflix

Avatar: The Last Airbender star addresses people’s concerns about Netflix’s new live-action series

Paul Sun-Hyung Lee spoke about 'trepidations' that fans might have

The wait is finally over, folks. Netflix's live-action adaptation of Avatar: The Last Airbender is here.

Avatar fans have had a whopping six-year wait for the show after the streaming platform confirmed that it was happening back in 2018.

The new series, which dropped on Netflix today (February 22), is described as a 'reimagined' version of the original Nickelodeon cartoon, which first aired on TV in 2005.

But, following the 2010 live-action film based on the well-loved animation flopping at the cinema, people have had their trepidations about Netflix's version.

The Last Airbender movie, starring Nicola Peltz Beckham and Dev Patel, boasts a gut-wrenching five percent on Rotten Tomatoes - making it one of the lowest scoring films on the platform.

With people's concerns in mind, new Avatar star Paul Sun-Hyung Lee has addressed the matter.

Speaking to UNILAD, Sun-Hyung Lee, who has also starred in the likes of The Mandalorian and Kim's Convenience, said: "I think [Avatar: The Last Airbender fans] can rest assured because there was a little bit of trepidation or a little bit of worry that we were going to stray really far from the source material and change the characters to make them all gritty and unrecognizable. I think we can lay those fears."

Kim's Convenience star Paul Sun-Hyung Lee plays General Iroh in the new series.
FREDERIC J. BROWN/AFP via Getty Images
He continued: "It’s safe to say that we pay direct respect [to the original]. We draw directly from the animated series which is beloved by millions, so there’s a foundation that is there."

The actor further insisted that original animated Avatar fans will be 'very happy' with Netflix's adaptation.

"We stay true to the characters and a lot of it will be familiar enough that the OG fans will be very, very happy, but there’s enough of a twist to it," Sun-Hyung Lee, who portrays General Iroh in the new series, explained.

"It is an adaptation; we’re not doing a one-to-one remake of the original series because there’s no point in that.

"A lot of the stuff that’s in animation doesn’t translate that well into live action, so some changes had to be made. Certain characters are introduced a little bit earlier, which is great, and it’s enough of a change that the OG fans will go, ‘I recognize this, I love this, it’s a great change’.

Gordon Cormier is Aang.

"And for the newer fans, for them to come in and be drawn in by the epic scope of the worlds that are created, the visual effects, the characters, the costumes - all these things will draw them into this great story we’re telling."

And it seems that Sun-Hyung Lee's optimism was rightly placed as the first Rotten Tomatoes score for the series have already come in.

At the time of writing, Avatar: The Last Airbender boasts an optimistic 78 percent audience score on the review site.

I guess only time will tell if it will continue to be well-received by fans - both old and new.

Avatar: The Last Airbender is now streaming on Netflix.

Topics: Netflix, Rotten Tomatoes, Film and TV, Celebrity