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Nothing's over while I'm breathing!

- Quaritch speaking to Jake before their battle.

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Miles Quaritch
Biographical Information

August 23, 2154 (Human body)

Lives in
Physical Description




Eye Color



SecOps colonel

Behind the Scenes
Portrayed by

Stephen Lang

First Appearance


Colonel Miles Quaritch was a RDA Security Operations commander, serving as the chief of security on Pandora in the early 2150s.

Serving as the senior RDA commander during the Pandoran War, he directed the destruction of the Omaticaya Clan's Hometree and led SecOps forces in the Assault on the Tree of Souls, where he was killed in action.

Despite his apparent death, Miles Quaritch has been resurrected in a new Avatar form.


Before Pandora and First Days[]

Before joining the Resources Development Administration Security Operations branch, Colonel Quaritch served as an infantry officer in the United States Marine Corps. He saw combat in numerous Earth military engagements without injury, most notably three tours in Nigeria with the Marines' First Reconnaissance Battalion.

On his first day on Pandora, an encounter with the wildlife dealt him a trio of trademark scars to the right side of his head and face. He was given the option to return home to Earth for reconstructive surgery but opted to stay on Pandora. With his impressive record, he was eventually chosen as the chief of security operations on Pandora.

Chief of Security[]

3D Version: red/cyancross-eyedColonel Quaritch in a security briefing

Colonel Quaritch was the chief of security for at least two years.[1] He was responsible for the security of the RDA operation and its personnel, which necessitated keeping the Na'vi in check. He had his own Dragon Assault Ship, which was personalized with an orange-colored Chinese dragon painted below the cockpit.

Quaritch was impressed by Jake Sully and made Jake a bargain that, in return for intelligence on the Na'vi, he would talk to the RDA corporate executives and get approval for Jake to receive the expensive treatment for his spinal injury, which would return the use of his legs. However, as time passed, Quaritch began to question where Jake's loyalties lay, becoming suspicious that his contact with the Na'vi to be distancing him from his humanity and mission. When Jake, in his avatar form, attacked and damaged a bulldozer, Quaritch personally went to arrest him. Quaritch, based upon Jake's video logs, which lamented the hopelessness of convincing the Omaticaya to leave Hometree, along with the report from Corporal Lyle Wainfleet that the Na'vi had retaliated for the destruction of the Trees of Voices by burning the bulldozers and killing the squad of troopers protecting them, came to the conclusion that the Omaticaya were a threat to the RDA's operation and could not be peacefully convinced to vacate their hometree. Colonel Quaritch personally led the operation that destroyed the Omaticaya's Hometree, first launching non-lethal gas canisters to force out the Na'vi, then ordering the destruction of the tree using missile strikes. Despite the attempt to flush out the Na'vi with gas, this operation resulted in the death of a number of Na'vi, including the Omaticaya's Clan Leader, Eytukan.

When Jake Sully, Grace Augustine, Norm Spellman and Trudy Chacon escaped custody, Quaritch was the first to act, moving outside of the Operations Center without an exo pack, attempting to stop their escape by firing on their SA-2 Sampson with a CARB Submachine Gun and his Wasp sidearm. He fatally wounded Dr. Augustine, but failed to stop the team from escaping Hell's Gate.

Assault on the Tree of Souls and death[]

3D Version: red/cyancross-eyedNeytiri kills Quaritch with two arrows

Colonel Quaritch devised the Assault on the Tree of Souls as a means to permanently sever the Na'vi's connection with Eywa and to decisively end the Pandoran War. He personally led the operation against the Na'vi in his Dragon Assault Gunship. While the Na'vi's numbers initially appeared to give them the advantage, Quaritch's heavily armed and well trained SecOps soldiers quickly dispatched the lightly-armed Na'vi, despite some losses. During the battle, while pursuing Jake, his gunship was attacked by the rebel Trudy Chacon in a stolen SA-2 Samson, allowing Jake Sully to escape being killed. Quaritch's gunship was able to destroy the rouge Samson and killed Chacon. Advancing relatively unopposed towards the Tree of Souls, the tide of the battle is unexpectedly changed when Pandora's wildlife, seemingly at the direction of Eywa herself, attacked RDA forces in mass. With all escorts distracted or destroyed, Jake was able to board the Valkyrie shuttle containing two "daisy cutter" bombs, and destroyed it, leaving only Colonel Quaritch in his Dragon gunship. Despite Quaritch's best efforts, Jake Sully still managed to inflict catastrophic damage to the gunship, causing it to lose control. Boarding his AMP suit, Quaritch jumped from the Dragon before it crashed. Now alone, Quaritch advanced to the Tree of Souls, where he stumbled across the module containing the link pod being used by Jake, but was attacked by Neytiri riding a thanator before he could destroy it. He lost control of the GAU-90, but killed the thanator with his AMP suit knife, leaving Neytiri trapped beneath her slain mount. Jake Sully's timely arrival caused Quaritch to focus on him, saving Neytiri. Using the bayonet of the wrecked GAU-90, Sully was able to deflect Quaritch's attacks in a fierce bout of melee combat long enough to destroy his AMP suit knife and land a piercing blow to the glass canopy.

The damage to the AMP suit canopy reduced visibility to near-zero and allowed toxic Pandoran air into the suit, forcing Quaritch to don an exopack. Realizing Jake's same weakness, Quaritch made a break for the module and managed to smash a window and an empty link unit open before resuming combat. This exposed Jake's human body to the toxic air, interrupting the link between Jake and his avatar, allowing Quaritch to subdue Jake. He picked up Jake by his hair, intending to use Jake's own dagger to cut his avatar's throat in a symbolic act of retribution for his betrayal of humanity. However, before Quaritch could do so, Neytiri, who had taken the time to free herself from under the thanator's carcass during the fight between Jake and Quaritch, fired two arrows into the Colonel's chest, ending Quaritch's life.


Quaritch in his new form

Despite his apparent death, Miles Quaritch is alive in a new Avatar form, sporting a similar likeness to his human body and the same eagle tattoo on his upper left arm.[2]

Personality and traits[]

3D Version: red/cyancross-eyedQuaritch working with weights

Quaritch looked and acted like a lifelong military man. He wore his hair short and was covered with battle scars, most notably a trio of claw marks on the side of his head which he sustained during his first day on Pandora.

His long-running military career was representative of his personality. He regularly worked out to off-set the low gravity on Pandora so he didn't get "soft". He was in outstanding physical condition, despite being middle aged, and was willing to put himself in significant personal risk when he though the situation warranted it. An expert with his AMP suit, he was familiar with combat techniques as demonstrated by his marksmanship, hand-to-hand and melee combat skills.

Despite being a fierce and merciless warrior, Quaritch took care of his own, and had good relations with his SecOps Soldiers, who respected him as a commander and leader. However, he also acknowledged during an initial briefing that he would not be able to save all of those he was charged with protection, due to the harsh environment of Pandora. He shows great admiration for the dedication Jake Sully showed by willingly performing covert intelligence gathering from within the Na'vi people.


Quaritch was an outstanding soldier and a deadly opponent in combat. He claimed to have survived three tours of Nigeria without a scratch. Quaritch was an expert marksman, managing to fatally wound Grace Augustine during the avatar team's escape from Hell's Gate. He's also shown to have a high tolerance for pain, easily ignoring his shoulder when it was set on fire.

His prowess in close range combat was also considerable as it took the combined efforts of Jake Sully and Neytiri to finally defeat him. Quaritch was an expert with his AMP suit, which made him even more lethal due to the protection the suit provided. He killed Neytiri's thanator during their encounter, stabbing it several times with his AMP suit knife.


Jake Sully[]

3D Version: red/cyancross-eyedQuaritch and Jake upon their first meeting

When Jake Sully first arrived on Pandora, Colonel Quaritch was very interested in him, as Jake was both in the Avatar Program and a former Marine, much like Colonel Quaritch. Quaritch soon made an offer to Sully, that if he gained intelligence on the Na'vi, Quaritch would speak to the RDA executives about paying for Sully to have an operation to fix his spinal injury and regain the ability to walk. Sully at first agreed, and willingly gave Quaritch intelligence about Hometree and the Tree of Souls. Quaritch was impressed by Sully, and the two shared a mutual respect, only until Sully began to show serious affection for the Na'vi. Quaritch began to question Sully's loyalty after he did not report in to him for two weeks. Their relationship changed after Sully assaulted an RDA bulldozer and became a traitor to the RDA. During the assault on the Tree of Souls, they faced one another in combat, and Quaritch came close to killing Sully, before Neytiri intervened and killed Quaritch with two arrows to the chest.

During Jake's comatose state in Avatar: The Next Shadow Quaritch appears in Jakes dream as a living dead with the two arrows still in his chest, taunting Jake for only causing destruction as Jake still blames himself for the destruction of the Omaticaya Hometree.

Parker Selfridge[]

Quaritch and his boss, RDA Administrator Parker Selfridge, appeared to have a good relationship and a mutual liking for each other. They both planned the destruction of the Hometree, although Selfridge was not as ruthless as Quaritch and was concerned that killing the Na'vi would look bad on the RDA's report on Earth. Quaritch promised Parker that he would destroy the Hometree in a humane way. However, scores of Na'vi were killed in the assault, and Selfridge, unlike Quaritch, became more reluctant to proceed with any further attacks on the Na'vi.

Dr. Grace Augustine[]

Colonel Quaritch and Dr. Augustine had little respect for each other, as both disagreed with the way that the Na'vi should be handled. Quaritch wanted to use military force to get the Na'vi to cooperate, while Grace on the other hand was against any form of force. Grace is later shot by Quaritch while escaping from Hell's Gate with Sully, Spellman and Chacon. She dies of her injuries before she can be saved by the Omaticaya.

Corporal Lyle Wainfleet[]

Quaritch appeared to get along well with Corporal Lyle Wainfleet, sending him to examine a squad that had been killed by the Na'vi as revenge for the destruction of the Trees of Voices, and referred to him by his first name while Wainfleet gave the report. Wainfleet was loyal to Quaritch and was in command of some of the ground forces during the assault on the Tree of Souls while Quaritch had overall command.

Avatar: The Game[]

After Commander Karl Falco went over the edge, Miles Quaritch took over the operation from the Central Command in Plains of Goliath. He ordered Able Ryder to take out the Na'vi commanders, to stop the battle in the Plains of Goliath, so they could go after Falco[3].


  • In the mobile game, his surname is erroneously spelt "Quarritch".
  • On his left arm close to his shoulder, there is a tattoo of an eagle taking flight.
  • Michael Biehn, who is a frequent collaborator of James Cameron, was considered for the role of Quaritch and even watched some 3D test footage with Cameron. After Sigourney Weaver was cast as Grace Augustine, Cameron rejected him for the role, for fear of audiences drawing Aliens comparisons.
  • In 2010, James Cameron confirmed that despite his death at the end of the first movie, Quaritch will return in the first three sequels, stating "I'm not going to say exactly how we're bringing him back, but it's a science fiction story, after all. His character will evolve into really unexpected places across the arc of our new three-film saga."
  • The teaser trailer for Avatar: The Way of Water includes an avatar character with an identical eagle tattoo to Quaritch's on its left upper arm, indicating that it is his avatar.

Memorable Quotes[]

"You are not in Kansas anymore. You are on Pandora, ladies, and gentlemen. Respect that fact."

- Quaritch welcoming his team.

"Out there, beyond that fence, every living thing that crawls, flies or squats in the mud wants to kill you and eat your eyes for jujubes."

- Quaritch explaining Pandora to the newcomers.

"It is my job to keep you alive. I will not succeed. Not with all of you."

- Quaritch getting the attention of the 'fresh meat'.

"This low gravity'll make you soft. You get soft, Pandora will shit you out dead with zero warning."

- Quaritch to Jake at their first meeting.

"You crossed the line."

- Quaritch to Jake after witnessing him disable an RDA bulldozer.

"So, you find yourself some local tail, and you just completely forget what team you're playin' for?"

- Quaritch to Jake after he attacks a dozer.

"These dumb bastards ain't getting the message. Alright, let's turn up the heat. Switch to incendiaries."

- Quaritch to Dragon gunner.

"This is Papa Dragon. I want this mission high and tight. I wanna be home for dinner."

- Quaritch speaking prior to the assault on the Tree of Souls.

"All aircraft! Weapons free! Weapons free!"

- Quaritch ordering all Scorpion Gunship and SA-2 Samson aircraft to engage the Na'vi riding their mountain banshees.

"Break formation! Engage all hostiles!"

- Quaritch ordering every single RDA gunship and transport, including himself, to engage all Na'vi forces in the air.

"Scorpions, pursue and destroy!"

- Quaritch ordering Scorpion Gunships to engage Na'vi forces on the ground and in the air.

"That's him! Get after him!"

- Quaritch ordering his pilot to go after Jake Sully.

"Light her up!"

- Quaritch orders his pilot to engage Trudy Chacon, who had just defected to the Na'vi.

"Nothing's over while I'm breathing!"

- Quaritch speaking to Jake before their battle.

"Hey Sully, how's it feel to betray your own race?"

- Quaritch taunting Jake during their fight.

"You think you're one of them? Time to wake up."

- Quaritch's final words before Neytiri kills him.

"Ladies and gentlemen, welcome to Pandora. Now listen up. Out there beyond the fence, every little thing that crawls, flies, or squats in the mud wants to kill you and eat your eyes for jujubes. That's a fact. We have an indigenous race of humanoid called the Na'vi. They're fond of arrows dipped in neurotoxin that will stop your heart in one minute. They are very hard to kill. Our mission on Pandora is to keep the peace. And to protect human life in a single most hostile environment in the known universe. In order to achieve that you got to obey the rules. They are there for a reason. We must walk softly. Carry a big ass-stick. Peace and prosperity for assault through superior firepower. Welcome to Pandora, ladies and gentlemen."

- Quaritch laying down rules for new recruits in a promotional video.
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  1. Commander Falco's Pandorapedia entry states that he was second only to Quaritch. Falco died in 2152.
  2. https://movieweb.com/avatar-the-way-of-water-trailer-reveals-dead-villain-return/
  3. James Cameron's Avatar: The Game