Much like the original 2009 Avatar, the sequel, Avatar: The Way of Water, is full of blue cat-alien people known as the Na’vi. Unlike its predecessor, Avatar 2 focuses a lot on the second generation, specifically the children of former Marine Jake Sully (Sam Worthington) and warrior Neytiri (Zoe Saldaña). The two of them have a whole brood of kids, plus a human tagalong. It’s all fun and family bonding until about halfway through the movie, when you realize the names of all the kids blurred by at the beginning of the movie, and it’s hard to tell who’s who after that. Whoops!
It’s a bit easier to tell the two young Na’vi girls apart, but the boys present a particular challenge. The two Sully brothers rarely — if ever — call each other by their names. They refer to each other as “bro,” and when other characters talk about them, they usually say something like “your son” or “your brother.”
But fear not! If you’ve just watched the movie and you’re still unclear on the names, we’ve broken down which kid is which, which actor plays each kid, and how to tell them apart when you head to the theaters for your second viewing. If you’re reading this for a crash course before the movie, we’ve tried to keep it spoiler-light and rely on visual cues — but be warned! There are still some vague reveals ahead.
[Ed. note: This post contains some mild spoilers for Avatar: The Way of Water.]
Played by: Jamie Flatters
Neteyem is Jake and Neytiri’s oldest child and firstborn son. Personality-wise, he’s the responsible golden child, the one Jake pushes to take the most responsibility and confides in the most. Jake and Neytiri often ask Neteyam to watch out for his younger siblings and keep them out of trouble. He doesn’t get much time on his own, because like a true older sibling in a narrative, he’s mostly around to provide a contrast to his younger siblings.
Visually, Neteyam and his younger brother almost look the same. The key to telling them apart when they’re next to each other is that Neteyam is taller. Otherwise, Neteyam wears a headband and has more hair, which he keeps swept back from his forehead.
He’s played by Jamie Flatters, who you might know from Netflix’s adaptation of The School for Good and Evil (if you have taste). In that YA fantasy movie, he plays Tedros, the son of King Arthur and the handsome love interest for the two lead characters. Flatters’ other work includes Netflix’s World War II movie The Forgotten Battle and the BBC children’s show So Awkward.
Played by: Britain Dalton
If the role of the main character fell to one of the siblings, it would be Lo’ak. He’s the second-born child and the younger son. He’s not as obedient or responsible as Neteyam, and he’s way more impulsive. He doesn’t follow Jake’s orders with the same diligence as his older brother. Most of Lo’ak’s arc revolves around how he feels like an outsider in his own family, which is exacerbated by how much he feels like an outsider around the reef-dwelling Na’vi his family visits. But he bonds with an outcast tulkun (alien whale) — and also with the reef clan leader’s pretty daughter, Reya (Bailey Bass). You can tell Lo’ak from his brother because he’s a little shorter; his hair appears to be shaved above his ears to give him more of a mohawk-ish appearance, with some of it pulled back into a half-ponytail; and he usually has a couple of errant braids dangling in his face.
Lo’ak is played by Britain Dalton, who in addition to appearing in a single episode of Criminal Minds (“Boxed In”) back in 2014, also starred in the first season of Amazon’s Goliath. Additionally, he played young Nathan Drake in Uncharted 4: A Thief’s End.
Played by: Sigourney Weaver
Jake and Neytiri’s adopted daughter is the mysterious offspring of Dr. Grace Augustine (Sigourney Weaver), whose avatar body is unconscious and in stasis. She’s very spiritual and in touch with Eywa, the force of life that unites all of Pandora. She’s a bit of a dreamer, which causes some of the reef clan teens to make fun of her.
Her name is Kiri — not Kitty, even though sometimes the way the characters speak makes it sound like the latter. But as far as we know, there are no cats, kittens, or kitties on Pandora. Kiri is the only one of the Sully siblings who does not keep her hair in braids. Instead, she has it in a choppy bob, though some longer strands are braided. Also, since she is a girl, she has some slight covering on her torso — can’t show female-presenting Na’vi nipples!
Kiri is also played by Sigourney Weaver. Yes, that’s right — Weaver plays a teenage version of herself and her own mom in the same movie! It’s pretty rad. If you somehow don’t know Sigourney Weaver, she starred as Ellen Ripley in the Alien franchise and Dana Barrett in the Ghostbusters movies. She also played the warden in Holes.
Played by: Trinity Jo-Li Bliss
Tuktirey — or Tuk for short — is the youngest child of the Sully family. She’s the easiest to identify, because she’s the smallest. Her older siblings are solidly young adults and almost as tall as their parents, but she’s absolutely a child. Most of Tuk’s journey involves sneaking around with her siblings when she isn’t supposed to. She has a big heart and loves her family very much, and she misses her forest home.
She’s played by Trinity Jo-Li Bliss, who’s been in a few kid-tailored shows, including Apple TV Plus’ Best Foot Forward and HBO Max’s The Garcias. This is her first theatrical role.
Played by: Jack Champion
Not officially a Sully kid but definitely part of the gang, Miles “Spider” Socorro is an orphaned human left on Pandora after the humans retreated. He was too young to make the long journey back to Earth, so he grew up with the few remaining human scientists on Pandora, but preferred to stomp through the local jungles with the Na’vi kids. You will absolutely recognize him, because he is the only human child. He also sports dreadlocks, he paints his body to look like a stripy Na’vi, and he runs around in a loincloth. He appears to have a crush on Kiri, which seems to be requited.
Spider is played by Jack Champion. He’s had a smattering of small roles in movies and TV, including a very tiny role as “Kid on Bike” in Avengers: Endgame. Champion is so dedicated to his role in the Avatar-verse that he named his cat in accordance with the Na’vi naming system: Butters “Te Ngeru” Champion, if you were curious.
But wait — there’s more! A lot of The Way of Water focuses on the younger generation beyond the Sully kiddos. The reef clan has kids too! Here are the important ones.
Played by Bailey Bass
You’ll notice Tsireya the moment she appears, because the camera lingers on her as Lo’ak stares at her, starry-eyed. Hey, he’s just a teenage boy and she is a very pretty teenage girl! Tsireya — or Reya for short — is the daughter of clan leaders Ronal (Kate Winslet) and Tonowari (Cliff Curtis). She’s nicer than her brother, and personally helps the Sully kids acclimate to reef life. Like the other sea Na’vi, she has turquoise skin rather than blue skin, a thick salamander-like tail, and thick forearms with fused digits. Her hair also falls in gentle waves down her back, and her eyes are ginormous.
She’s played by Bailey Bass, who starred as Claudia in the AMC adaptation of Interview With the Vampire. Bass is having a great year!
Aonung and Rotxo
Played by: Filip Geljo
Aonung is Tsireya’s brother. While Reya is warm toward the newcomers, Aonung is a bit of a dick. He makes fun of Kiri and eggs Lo’ak and Neyetam into a fight. He’s cocky and definitely plays the role of the bully. Like his sister, he has turquoise skin, though he keeps his hair in a braided top bun. Both Aonung and Lo’ak struggle with their fathers’ expectations.
Aonung is played by Filip Geljo, who starred in the Canadian children’s show Odd Squad from 2014 to 2016. It’s a spy show where child agents solve mysteries with math.
The last notable reef clan kid isn’t explicitly related to Reya and Aonung, though he does hang out with them a lot. Mostly, he goes along with Aonung’s plans and follows his lead. He’s the most nondescript of the three, with turquoise skin and short, curly hair. New Zealand soap opera actor Duane Evans Jr. plays Rotxo.
Now that we’re all schooled on who’s who in the Sully clan and beyond, it’s time to put your knowledge to the test with this training image before you head back to theaters for round two.
Avatar: The Way of Water is in theaters now.