- Played By: Noah Ringer"My name is Aang ... and I am the Avatar. *Unhoods himself to reveal his airbending tattoos* I ran away, but I'm back now. It's time for you to stop doing this!"
The titular Last Airbender. He is the Avatar, the only one who can bend all four elements to his will.
- Adaptational Angst Upgrade: He spends most of the movie angsting and brooding about his responsibilities as the Avatar and being the last airbender. While Aang had occasional moments of this in the cartoon, he was always the The Pollyanna at his core.
- Age Lift: According to the novelization. He was twelve in the show, but is thirteen in the movie.
- Big "NO!": When he discovers that Gyatso's dead.
- Blow You Away: His native element is air.
- The Chosen One: He's the Avatar.
- Composite Character: Downplayed, but he does take on some of Katara's role (like inspiring the Earthbenders to rebel).
- Elemental Powers: He's the only one with all four of them.
- Its Pronounced Tro PAY: "Aang" is pronounced like "Ong", though in the cartoon, it rhymed with 'gang'.
- Mr. Exposition: Not as much as Katara and Zhao, but he does give some exposition.
- The Quiet One: Especially compared to his cartoon counterpart, who was Keet.
- White Male Lead: Due to casting, which also makes him a Mighty Whitey in general, but especially in freeing the Earthbender camp, who egregiously lack the agency to rebel and only do so when he tells them they're surrounded by their natural element.
- Played By: Nicola Peltz"My name is Katara. And I'm the only waterbender left in the Southern Water Tribe."
The only waterbender in the South Pole, and the movie's Deuteragonist.
- Adaptational Wimp: Her waterbending isn't as powerful as in the cartoon, and she is Curb Stomped by Zuko instead of almost winning against him.
- Additionally, she cowers against Sokka for accidentally getting him wet. In the show, she's not only laughed off such a prank, but also was. not. afraid. to call him out on his sexism.
- Age Lift: According to the novelization, she's fifteen in the movie. In the show, she was fourteen.
- Chickification: Where the series depicts her as a highly talented bender capable of going up against masters without formal training, the film version blunders her attempts at bending so often that it renders her nearly completely useless and a couple of her defining moments of bravery and compassion from the series has been given to Aang.
- Dull Surprise: She's not very expressive.
- Making a Splash: She's a waterbender.
- Ms. Exposition: She's one of the film's primary exposition deliverers.
- Narrator: She provides narration and voiceovers.
- Race Lift: The Water Tribes in the animated series have ambiguous racial features (and are culturally based on the Inuit), but Nicola Peltz is very clearly Caucasian. It's made worse by the fact that background Water Tribe members are played by Inuit actors.
- Played By: Jackson Rathbone"Okay! Everybody can help us now!"
Katara's brother, and a water tribe warrior with a serious disposition.
- Adaptational Angst Upgrade: The movie stripped away most of Cartoon!Sokka's traits, like comedy and sarcasm, and put angst in their place.
- Adaptational Jerkass: Besides the above-mentioned loss of comedy and sarcasm, it's implied he's hit Katara before when in the show, the worst he'd do to her was just run his mouth.
- Age Lift: Seventeen in the movie (according to the novelization), fifteen in the show.
- Badass Normal: He's a nonbender, but still a good fighter.
- Dull Surprise: Like his sister.
- Its Pronounced Tro PAY: His name is pronounced as Soak-a, though in the cartoon, it was pronounced Sock-a.
- Race Lift: Jackson Rathbone is Caucasian, while Cartoon!Sokka had the ambiguous racial features (brown skin, brown hair, blue eyes) common to Water Tribesmen.
- Would Hit a Girl: Implied to have beaten Katara before given that she cowers when she accidentally gets him wet while he seems like he was gearing up to do something violent to her.
- Played By: Dev Patel"I am Prince Zuko ... son of Fire Lord Ozai and heir to the throne! Bring me ... all your elderly!"
The exiled prince of the Fire Nation, who competes with Zhao to find and capture the Avatar.
- Adaptational Attractiveness: Cartoon Zuko had a giant, disfiguring burn scar over a quarter of his face, though he's often considered attractive despite that. Movie!Zuko's scar is far less prominent.
- Adaptational Nice Guy: He's rather nicer in the movie than in the first season of the show.
- A Day In The Lime Light: Zuko's Story (a prequel manga focusing on Zuko's quest of finding the Avatar up to the beginning of the film) and the video game are mainly based on his POV, especially Zuko's Story.
- Age Lift: According to the novelization, he's eighteen. According to the cartoon, he's sixteen.
- Anti-Villain: He's chasing the avatar because he he thinks it'll make his father love him.
- Badass Normal: Even when he's not using firebending (such as when he's the Blue Spirit) he's badass.
- Cool Mask: As the Blue Spirit.
- Dual Wielding: He wields dual swords.
- Informed Deformity: His scar is barely noticeable.
- Race Lift: Zuko is of the Fire Nation, which in the series was dominantly based on East Asia with some Caucasian-looking people and select groups of Aztec, Incan, and Mayan people thrown in. Dev Patel is Indian.
- Playing with Fire: He's a capable firebender.
- Tragic Villain: He's an abused kid who just wants his father to love him.
- Unreliable Narrator: Comes across as this in the video game, after both he and Ong escape from the Western Air Temple. while Ong waits for Zuko to recover. leaving out Ong's tale about Kuzon and how he hopes that Zuko and he could become friends.
- Played By: Shaun Toub(to Zhao)"You stand alone. And that has always been your great mistake."
- Cool Old Guy: Calm, wise, and the only one who actually loves Zuko.
- Cool Uncle: He's Zuko's uncle and the only one in his family who actually cares for him.
- Elemental Baggage: Is notable for not needing this, instead being able to find a source of power in his on chi, much like firebenders in the cartoon.
- Its Pronounced Tro PAY: In the show, his name was pronounced Eye-roh, here, it's Ee-roh.
- Old Master: He's pretty old and the best firebender shown.
- Playing with Fire: The best firebender in the movie.
- Race Lift: He was fantasy-East Asian in the show, but he's played by an ethnically Persian actor here.
- Played By: Aasif MandviZhao:"Sire, I have good news. As You Know, I conducted a raid on the Great Library, which most said didn't exist."Ozai: "Get on with it."Zhao: "I found scrolls in the library. We are deciphering them. But I believe they may contain information as to where the Ocean and Moon Spirits live in this world. With this information, we could bring down the Northern Water Tribe city, we could show the world the true strength of fire."
A Fire Nation commander and Zuko's main rival in the hunt for the Avatar.
- Adaptational Heroism: Only slightly, but he's definitely more sympathetic in the the movie, with Ozai getting his more villainous traits.
- As You Know: Does this several times.
- Death by Adaptation: He's drowned by some waterbenders, whereas in the show, he's carried off by the Ocean Spirit to an uncertain fate.
- Decomposite Character: Ozai takes over several of his roles in the show, most notably coming up with the plan to kill the moon spirit.
- Demoted to Dragon: While he was always Ozai's underling, in the show he's the main villain for season 1 and is far more independent. Movie!Zhao is more subservient to Ozai, and it's not solely his idea to kill the Moon Spirit.
- The Heavy: He's the actual threat the heroes fight, although Ozai is the Big Bad.
- Memetic Mutation: The amount of time he spends talking about the Great Library (as opposed to the one time he vaguely mentions it in the show) has gone memetic.
- Mr. Exposition: He's another of the film's main exposition givers.
- Playing with Fire: As in the show, he can do this, although it's not showcased as much.
- Race Lift: Yet another example of Racebending.
- Sherlock Scan: Somehow manages to deduce that the Blue Spirit is Zuko through a glimpse at his lips.
- "It is our destiny ... to have found this information, Zhao. Eliminate the Spirits. Take the city and we will have thwarted the Avatar in the process."
Zuko's father, the Fire Lord. Has a far more active role in the movie than in the show.
- Abusive Parents: Just like his cartoon counterpart.
- Adaptational Ugliness: While Cartoon!Ozai was quite handsome, this Ozai is far more average looking.
- Big Bad: In the show, he was a Greater-Scope Villain for Season 1. In the movie, he takes a far more active role, and helps Zhao create the plan to kill the moon.
- Composite Character: He takes on elements of Zhao's character.
- He Who Must Not Be Seen: A truly bizarre version. In the final scene, Ozai is shot mostly behind or in silhouette, like in the show, despite him having been shown completely earlier on.
- Race Lift: Ozai was East Asian in the show, but he's played by Māori actor Cliff Curtis here.
- "I do, Father."
Zuko's younger sister. She appears in the movie's final scene, where her father tells her to go search for the Avatar in place of Zuko.
- Adaptational Personality Change: Cartoon!Azula was composed and in-control, even coming off as The Stoic at times; from what little of what we see of her, this version of the character wears her instability on her sleeve.
- Giggling Villain: From what little screentime we get of her, it appears that she'll be this.
- Playing with Fire: According to Zuko, she, like her show counterpart, is a firebending prodigy.
- Race Lift: The character was the equivalent of East Asian in the show, but she's played by an actress of Mexican and Indian descent here.
- Sequel Hook: She is one.
- "This time we show the fire nation that we believe in our beliefs as much as they believe in theirs"
Ruler of the Northern Water Tribe in place of her father, who suffered from Death by Adaptation.
- Composite Character: She's mostly like Cartoon!Yue, but rules the Northern Water Tribe in place of her father, Chief Arnook.
- Heroic Sacrifice: As in the show, she does this to revive the Moon Spirit. Unlike in the show, she does not become the next moon spirit.
- Mystical White Hair: As in the series. It shows that she has been healed by the Moon Spirit.
- Unfortunate Character Design: It's often claimed that the design of her hair looks like a penis when seen from the back.
- Winter Royal Lady: As a princess of the Northern Water Tribe.
The Dragon Spirit
A dragon that Aang meets in the spirit world, who fills in for several characters from the cartoon.
- Composite Character: He has elements of Avatar Roku, Fang, Koh, and Guru Pathik.
- Instant Awesome: Just Add Dragons!: Giant spirit dragon. Need I say more?
- Spirit Advisor: Takes on this role for Aang, in place of Roku.