Avatar: Sozin's Comet

Avatar: Sozin's Comet
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Brief Synopsis:
Part of an ongoing project to convert the “Avatar: The Last Airbender” series into a more cinematic format, this edit connects all 4 parts of the season 3 finale, removing all blackouts/titles/credits. Some minor changes to the narrative have been made, such as the cutting of “Loser Lord” and the re-placing of Zuko’s visit to his father at the end of the film. The Lion Turtle sequences are also now subtitled.
Sozin’s Comet already felt like a film split into 4 parts and always seemed destined to be streamlined into one. Having seen a few attempts at this never reach completion, I decided to have a go myself.

As a fan of the series I re-watch it on a fairly regular basis, and constantly skipping through titles and credits when binging 20 min episodes can get repetitive. Therefore, the long term plan is to do something similar with the rest of the series. If this interests you and you would like to be kept up to date, please consider visiting the forums and contributing to the discussion.
Other Sources:
Some SFX from Freesound.

Special Thanks:
Some of the editing choices were inspired by other unfinished projects I read about on the internet years ago. I don’t know who those people are, but if they are reading – you have my gratitude!

To slekyr and jrwhag42 for your encouragement.
Release Information:
Editing Details:
Nearly every blackout/episode break did not allow for a seamless flow when removed, therefore establishing shots were typically extended slightly and sometimes the score was tweaked to allow for the longer pause. Apart from "Loser Lord", lines or shots were only cut if needed in order to eliminate the source materials episodic nature.
Cuts and Additions:
The Gist:
- Created new opening title sequence, adding Iroh's tsungi horn.
- Cut all titles and credit sequences
- Removed all gaps/"fade-to-blacks" so that all scenes flow seamlessly one to another
- Smoothed transitions between episodes
- Subtitled Lion Turtle
- Cut "Loser Lord" - It feels tonally out of place and immature given where the characters are now at. It's also a terrible joke.
- Moved Zuko's prison sequence to after "The End" as a sort of semi-end credits sequence. This always felt like a stronger end to me, and it felt odd to have it transition to another scene.
- Altered colour/contrast on end credits so as to create a less jarring visual change between the darkness of the prison visit and the bright blue of the credits backdrop.

Full cutlist:
- 00:00:00 - Added custom own-the-source disclaimer
- 00:00:12 - Added fanedit.org logo
- 00:00:16 - Added Scribbling Man Logo
- 00:00:23 - Added custom title
- Scored above with Uncle Iroh’s Sungi Horn
- 00:07:53 - Cut Aang’s brief exchange with Zuko in order to drop the scene black out and allow for a believable transition. The same essential thing is communicated: Sozin is going to destroy the earth kingdom - which is most of the world - and Aang is panicking.
- 00:15:11 – Removed episode break.
- 00:22:18 – Bridged gap between episodes 1 and 2. Removed music from establishing shot and added jungle ambience to smooth transition.
- 00:27:12 – Removed episode break.
- 00:36:13 – Removed episode break, extended length shot of Aang, extended establishing shot for following scene. Merged parts of score to help with transition.
- 00:43:09 – Subtitled Lion Turtle in “Avatar” font
- 00:44:19 – Trimmed shots of Aang. Selectively merged shots of comet from end of episode 2 and start of episode 3. Added fireball SFX to aid transition.
- 00:50:51 – Removed episode break.
- 00:56:42 – Removed episode break.
- 01:06:08 – Bridged gap between episodes 3 and 4.
- 01:14:12 – Removed episode break.
- 01:17:20 – Added subtitles to Lion Turtle flashback.
- 01:19:56 – Tweaked score
- 01:20:01 – Removed episode break.
- 01:20:41 – Cut “Loser-lord”. Removed sound of Sokka’s footsteps and extended shot of Toff to aid transition.
- 01:24:31 – Cut Zuko prison visit (for later re-placement)
- 01:26:40 – Added custom credit (to replace separate episode credits)
- 01:26:44 – Inserted Zuko prison visit as semi-end credit scene. Extended score and shot slightly to aid fade in.
- 01:27:40 – Adjusted colour of credits (to create less jarring visual contrast between dark prison scene and bright white blue credit backdrop)

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7:53 - Maybe this is my bias showing, but that line that Zuko has towards Aang that you cut here is in my opinion a very iconic line. It was in the trailer for this event and it one of the more memorable lines in the show. I understand why you cut it (commercial break) but I'm not the biggest fan of the change.

36:12 - I know you don't have a lot to work with, but I felt like you cut ever so slightly too soon for the moment to land. In the original it uses the commercial break to do the same thing, but I wonder if you could somehow hold on Aang just a few dozen milliseconds longer.

44:19 - I actually really loved what you did here, works perfectly and I probably wouldn't have noticed the difference if I hadn't had the cut list in front of me.

1:19:56 - I gotta be honest, I do not like the change of the score here. I know it was done for the commercial break but the score feels like it was cut off at the kneecaps; and it kind of was.

End credits scene - As you have it, it goes:

-The End
-custom credit scene
-Zuko Okazi scene
-OG end credits scene

Personally, I would remove the custom credit scene and put the OG scene in between The End and the Zuko scene to make it more of a true end credits scene. I'd love to know your thoughts on that idea.

As it stands, you've made the experience a streamlined movie even more so than the original broadcast release. I appreciate how smooth most of the cut commercial breaks are, even if I don't agree with a cut here or there. And yeah, I hate the loser lord joke too.

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Owner's reply April 17, 2022

Hey :) Thank you for sharing your thoughts!

7:53 - It's not a line that I wanted to cut, but as it isn't vital and it was needed for the transition to work it had to go. Keeping it in just felt very unnatural to me and the way the score swells as he says that line makes it very obvious that we're moving toward a commercial break.

36:12 - At the time of editing I was less inventive than I am now. If it just needs the shot to hold a little longer then I'm sure that's doable. At some stage I will revise it and keep this in mind.

1:19:56 - again, I will take another look. Thanks for the feedback :)

I'm not sure I fully understand which bits you're referring to with the ending, but am I right in thinking you essentially meant to have the Zuko/Ozai scene as something that comes after the credits roll? If so I'm happy to keep it in mind for when I next look at the material :)

As you mentioned in the other review, I have indeed come along as an editor between this edit and the other one. I am bound to revisit this after doing the other chapters, if only to bring a bit more consistency to the presentation (I'm not hugely keen on my title opening for this anymore). When I do I will take another look at the bits you've pointed out. Thank you again!

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