Avatar 2: Dive Mask + Life Support Systems

  • 2023

  • Product
    Sport and Lifestyle

Commissioned By:

James Cameron

Fox Studios

Designed In:


The Avatar Dive Mask is a cutting-edge full-face diving mask designed for the underwater actors in Avatar 2: Way of the Water. This project represents the collaborative efforts of industry leaders, with Wētā Workshop spearheading the Conceptual Design, Design + Industry managing the Design + Build process, alongside Technical Diving Expert John Garvin, for James Cameron’s 2022 feature film. By integrating exceptional visibility, advanced communication, and streamlined safety features, this innovative mask caters to the unique demands of professional film production while enhancing the diving experience.

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Image: Behind the scenes of 20th Century Studios' AVATAR 2. Photo by Mark Fellman. © 2022 20th Century Studios. All Rights Reserved.
Image: Director James Cameron behind the scenes of 20th Century Studios' AVATAR 2. Photo by Mark Fellman. © 2022 20th Century Studios. All Rights Reserved.
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  • The Avatar Dive Mask was designed to address the unique demands of Avatar 2's underwater film production while elevating the diving experience. Key challenges included facilitating clear, hands-free communication, preventing fogging and CO2 buildup, and ensuring a customizable fit for diverse facial structures. Simultaneously, the mask needed to accommodate the rigorous underwater filming process, integrating internal optical fibre lighting and microphone to streamline underwater tasks and ensure safety during extensive sessions. By overcoming these challenges, the Avatar Dive Mask revolutionises diving technology for both the entertainment industry and the broader diving community.

  • Cutting-edge features to address the unique demands of underwater film production: Innovative communication, wide-angle lens, and adaptable sealing system solve communication, visibility, and fit challenges. The integrated compact camera, heads-up display, and LED headlamp streamline underwater tasks. During the design process, roadblocks like facial and lens seal optimisation were encountered, but a compression sealing system was developed to ensure complete water ingress integrity during each dive. Advanced airflow and anti-fogging technologies were incorporated to mitigate fogging and CO2 build-up. The final result is a ground-breaking mask that was tested to meet the stringent requirements of Avatar 2's filming and scuba diving equipment standards requirements, while enhancing the overall diving experience.

  • The Avatar Dive Mask revolutionises underwater film production, streamlining processes and enhancing safety for actors + crew. Commercial enquiries have extended to recreational and professional divers, marine researchers, and rescue teams, offering a versatile, high-performance diving accessory. Environmentally, the mask can be completely broken down into individually recyclable plastic parts that do not feature contaminating elements such as glues or over-moulding. Societally, the mask fosters aquatic exploration, research, and conservation, as well as improving underwater communication and safety. By setting a new standard for diving technology, the Avatar Dive Mask contributes to creating engaging visual experiences + positive change within the industry.

  • Full face, uninterrupted lens: Diver vision is maximised by the Avatar Lens, a carefully contoured lens that balances the need for minimal distortion/light refraction with the requirement for maximum window + minimal mask frame to be visible to the diver/cameras. Anti-fogging technology: The Avatar Dive Mask features advanced airflow + defogging mechanisms to ensure a clear, fog-free view throughout the dive. Adaptable sealing system: Our innovative sealing system accommodates various facial structures, ensuring a secure + comfortable fit while maintaining an effective seal against water ingress. Modularity: Mask components are easily interchangeable, allowing for customization + adaptation to specific needs, enhancing both the user experience and practicality. Hydrodynamic efficiency: The mask's streamlined design minimises water resistance, enabling divers to move effortlessly through the water, conserving energy + improving performance. Durability and reliability: The use of high-quality materials and rigorous testing during the design process ensures longevity and dependability, even in the most demanding conditions. Environmentally-conscious design: By reducing the need for multiple pieces of equipment, the Mask promotes sustainability by minimising waste + manufacturing impact. The Avatar Dive Mask represents a comprehensive + forward-thinking solution for underwater exploration + communication, with potential applications extending beyond the film industry to benefit the broader diving community, researchers, and rescue operations.