Hollywood director James Cameron says the Avatar sequels will almost certainly be shot in New Zealand where film crews have a freshness and flexibility that he no longer finds in the US.

But he's told the New York Times he's not moving to New Zealand to compete with Wellington-based Sir Peter Jackson.

The two directors are regarded as kindred spirits who push technological limits of film.

The Avatar sequels will almost certainly be shot in Sir Peter's Wellington production studio.

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Avatar 2 won't be ready until 2015 or later, at least a year later than Fox wanted.

- AAP