- "What's the matter guys? Never seen a real Jaeger before?"
Amara Namani is a cadet in the Pan Pacific Defense Corps. She is the pilot of Scrapper, and following her conscription into the PPDC, becomes the co-pilot of Bracer Phoenix and Gipsy Avenger.
July 5, 2024[note 1], a five year-old Amara and her family visit the Santa Monica Pier. After taking a photograph with her family, Amara goes to the side of the pier to look over the railing. She is seemingly unaware of the emergence of Insurrector right behind her, and is separated from her parents by the panicking crowd.
Insurrector smashes through the pier, creating a gap that Amara is afraid to jump. Her parents encourage her to jump, but she hesitates just long enough to watch her family get crushed by Insurrector's foot. The pier collapses, Amara falls into the water and nearly drowns amid the debris when a lifeguard saves her life. He carries her to the beach, where she witnesses Insurrector fight Striker Eureka and Hydra Corinthian.
She and the other civilians are forced to flee when the fight moves from the shore onto dry land. Amara wanders the city, jostled by fleeing civilians, asking for the whereabouts of her parents, in denial about their deaths. Failing to pay attention to her surroundings, Amara is nearly crushed by debris from a falling building that Insurrector is shoved against. Trapped, Amara calls out for help. The debris begins to move and reveals a Rogue Jaeger piloted by a man named Kai. Amara tries to escape him at first, but begrudgingly trusts him and is taken out of the city while the Jaegers continue to fight Insurrector.
Amara is taken to Kai's warehouse, where she meets a sympathetic Hannah, Kai's partner. Kai and Hannah attempt to discuss how to handle Amara in the wake of her family's death, but Amara pushes back against them, refusing to believe her family is dead. She runs deeper into the warehouse in the hopes of escaping them. She comes across Kai's robot dog, Twitch, who approaches her. Amara breaks down and begins to cry. While Kai is reluctant to take on the responsibility taking care of her, Hannah decides that they're obligated to do so.
Life with Kai and Hannah
Amara spends the next six years of life with Kai and Hannah. At Hannah's encouragement, Kai tries to teach Amara how to build and work on Rogue Jaegers with Scrapper, who he improves yearly, but Amara never "finds the time" to work with him. Amara eventually how to ride Kai's motorcycle, Boneshaker and bonds with Twitch, his pet robot.
However, still haunted by the death of her family, Amara experiences violent nightmares of the attack, which only get worse over time. Though Hannah urges Kai to take her to a therapist, Kai refuses, believing what they provide Amara is more than enough, and that she'd move on from her nightmares eventually.
Rogue Jaeger Races
In 2030, Amara wakes from a dream where her family urges her to jump and transform into Kaiju. Though Hannah tries to comfort Amara with the reassurance that the Kaiju are never coming back, Amara remains fearful. In an act of rebellion, Amara decides not to help Kai work on Scrapper and steals, not only his motorcycle, but the turbo jumpers he created. Amara heads for the race track, accompanied by Twitch.
As she approaches the area she crashes Kai's back in front of Ada and her friends, Lewis and Liz Waller, and Riya Khatri. Amara, eager to race, begs Ada to allow her to participate in the race, but Ada tells her she can only watch because she's too young. When Lewis and Riya laugh at her, Amara challenges them, saying they're too afraid of being beaten by a kid.
Riya convinces Ada to allow Amara to participate with her pocket money as cover for the stakes in the race. Ada clarifies that Amara can race with the others for "fun", she cannot win the prize money or trophies. When the race begins, Amara gains the lead on the Rogue Jaegers, leading the way. Riya, pilot of the Rogue Jaeger Headhunter, attempts to gain ground on Amara only for the tail of her Jaeger to be clipped by a low bridge, causing a collapse. Amara continues to remain in the lead as Lewis and Liz gain on her in Scuttler.
In order to remain in the lead, Amara uses the retrofitted turbo jumpers on Kai's motorcycle to gain ground and cross a gap in the road. However, the boosters give out and she crashes just below the other side of the broken road. When she regains consciousness, she manages to catch the tail of Ada warning her of an approaching Jaeger. Amara spots Sting Blades moving toward her and freezes, imagining a Kaiju in its place.
As Sting Blades grows closer to her, Scrapper appears and incapacitates Sting Blades. Amara, realizing Kai saved her, tries to explain herself, but Kai dismisses the attempt and tells her to climb onto the Jaeger. Amara does what she's told and the two return to the warehouse.
Running Away from Home
Hannah tends Amara while Kai admonishes her about stealing from his shop and nearly getting herself killed. Angry, Amara accuses Kai of not caring about her or wanting her around. Furious, Kai tells Amara that she needs to take responsibility for her own actions, referring to her as his daughter. Amara tells Kai he's not her father and storms out of the house. Without their realizing, Amara steals Scrapper from the shop and returns to the race track. With Ada's permission, Amara is allowed to participate.
Riya, Lewis, and Liz are in the process of another race when a boulder comes crashing toward them. Scuttler and Headhunter swear out of the way, and watch as Scrapper smashes the boulder in half. Concerned, Riya asks if Amara knows what she's doing by continuing to participate, Amara confidently answers she knows better than Riya.
As they prepare to resume the race proper, Headhunter is hit with a pulse scrambler that disables it systems. Riya assures Amara that she's unharmed, but makes note that pulse scramblers are recognized weapons and not allowed in races. Another Rogue Jaeger, piloted by Jin Yaozu and Vadim Sokolov.
Amara protests against the use of weapons to no avail. She is pursued by Arachnaut, whom she fights back against. Lewis and the others warn Amara not to antagonize Arachnaut, but she tells them that they're underestimating her. She manages to get Scrapper to roll into a ball and crashes into Arachnaut. When tries to attack it again, Scrapper fails to respond, and accuses Yaozu of damaging the Jaeger when she notices Kai. She explains to Kai that Scrapper isn't working, Kai explains that he imobilized Scrapper's systems and demanded she get out of Scrapper. Furious, Amara declares she hates Kai and climbs out of Scrapper, running away.
Stopping Mech Czar
Choosing not to return home, Amara hides. When Kai finds her, he tries to explain his behavior to her as a fear of getting close to anyone. Amara argues he allowed Hannah to get close to him, but Kai recounts that Hannah was nearly killed after in the Sulfury attack in Seattle when she assumed he was still inside his business building. Kai tells he only wants to keep her safe. They two make amends, apologizing to each other for their behavior.
Returning to the warehouse, Amara and Kai enter to find the workshop in ruins. They search for Hannah, but only come across Twitch's mangled body. While Kai goes in search for Hannah Amara spots several grooves and puncture holes in the concrete. She calls for Kai, but is told by her guardian to remain outside of the adjacent room. Her curiosity and concern getting the better of her, Amara ignore Kai's order. Entering the room, she finds Kai holding Hannah's dead body.
Amara begins to blame herself for what happened to Hannah, but Kai takes the responsibility, feeling he failed to listen to Hannah when he needed to. Following the discovery that the man working for Mech Czar was responsible for Hannah's death and the theft of Scrapper, whom Kai returned before to search for Amara, Kai and Amara prepare to steal Scrapper back from Garza.
Arriving at the race track, Kai plays decoy and tries to disable Scrapper with the immobilizer, not realizing that Garza disabled the killswitch. Amara goes to find Ada. Sneaking past Sokolov and Garza, she boards Arachnaut, catching Sokolov off-guard. Ada is given enough to escape and Garza can do nothing but watch as Amara uses his Rogue Jaeger to fight Scrapper.
Amara uses the pulse scrambler to disable Scrapper momentarily and attempts to overpower the Jaeger. Yaozu begs for mercy, claiming he was forced to kill Hannah. Amara calls him out on his lie, knowing Hannah didn't have to die, and so Yaozu admits to instigating the situation so he could "shut" Amara up once and for all.
Kai attempts to help Amara, attacking Scrapper with a pipe. However, he's thrown aside by the Jaeger and Scrapper begins to tear Arachnaut apart. Headhunter and Scuttler rush in to help, ramming Scrapper just enough to loosen its grip on Arachnaut. In a last ditch effort, Amara climbs out of Arachnaut and uses a sheet of metal to cut Scrapper's fuel lines. Yaozu loses control of Scrapper, inadvertently crushing Garza when it topples over. Amara rushes to Kai's aid, and promises to get him help. However, a dying Kai asks Amara to take care of her before finally passing.
Five Years Later
For the next five years, Amara lives on her own. Lamenting the loss of Kai and Hannah, she reflects on the loss of both her families as she prepares to steal a plasma capacitor from the remains of Romeo Blue from the Santa Monica Scrapyard.
Pacific Rim: Uprising
In search of more parts to complete Scrapper, Amara enters the Santa Monica Scrapyard. Entering the remains of Romeo Blue, she gains access to its Conn-Pod and strips the cockpit of its plasma capacitor. Amara presumably exits the Conn-Pod as Jake Pentecost and Sonny, two Black Market dealers, enter in search of the very item she stole.
Amara, unaware that she is being pursued, escapes Romeo Blue with little trouble and drives out of the scrapyard on Kai’s motorcycle with the police in pursuit of her. She manages to evade arrest and detection and returns to Kai’s warehouse where she prepares to use the stolen part on Scrapper.
Amara activates Scrapper, inadvertently luring Jake into the hangar where it resided. Thinking he doesn't notice her, Amara tries to sneak up on Jake and him over the head with a pipe. Jake evades her attack and disarms in her seconds. When he asks whether or not she built Scrapper, Amara tells him that Scrapper is not for sale. Jake threatens to take Scrapper by force when they overhear the sirens of the police. Amara climbs into Scrapper and prepares to leave, when Jake enters the cockpit in search of the co-pilot mechanism.
Amara tells him Scrapper is small enough for her to pilot on her own and refuses to leave the cockpit when Jake demands that she let him to pilot. Escaping the warehouse, Amara attempts to evade the police when Scrapper’s path is blocked by November Ajax. The pilots of November Ajax advise Amara to disembark from the Jaeger, but she ignores their orders and fires off several smoke canisters in a move to mask her movements.
November Ajax zeroes in on their location as Amara transforms Scrapper into a rolling ball and begins to run circles around the Jaeger’s feet. Amara uses the momentum to launch the Jaeger into the ruined building. She boasts to Jake that they escaped them with ease, but November Ajax locates them immediately and begins tearing the building apart to reach them.
Reluctantly, Amara follows Jake’s order to climb to the top of November Ajax and allows him to launch one of the ion batteries out of Scrapper. The ion battery disables November Ajax’s systems momentarily, allowing them to resume escape. Scrapper, working on 11% and decreasing power, is only able to get as far as the beach before November Ajax disables Scrapper with grappling tasers.
Conscripted in the PPDC
Amara and Jake are thrown in jail, with no certainty of release. Jake indirectly blames Amara for their predicament, but Amara reminds him that he led the police and the PPDC to her "command center". The two attempt to argue over each other, which ends in Jake telling Amara to shut up. After a moment Jake asks why she built Scrapper. Hesitant, Amara tells him she believes the Kaiju will return and that Scrapper was built for her protection.
Amara is taken with Jake to the Moyulan Shatterdome after he accepts Secretary-General Mako Mori's "offer" to rejoin the PPDC. Amara asks why she was brought along with Jake, Jake tells her that the PPDC is interested in her ability to build Jaegers. Amara is taken aback by the appearance of Valor Omega patrolling the Shatterdome grounds. The two met by Nathan Lambert, who gives them a brief tour of the outer Shatterdome. Amara marvels at the sight of Saber Athena, Bracer Phoenix, and Titan Redeemer. When she asks which Jaeger Lambert piloted, he tells her Gipsy Avenger was his Jaeger.
Entering the cadet quarters, Amara is introduced to the cadets, Ilya, Ou-Yang Jinhai, Suresh Khuran, Tahima Shaheen, Renata, and Viktoriya Malikova. After Lambert and Jake leave, Amara tries to introduce herself to Vik, but Vik expresses disinterest in hearing her story and tells her to find another occupation if her only skill is mechanics.
Jinhai decides to help Amara get settled in and promises to teach her how to speak Russian to “calm” Vik down. Confused, Amara asks why Vik has a problem with her, Renata explains that Vik failed the entrance tests three times and has a problem with how Amara gained entry into the academy.
Training with the Cadets
The following day, Amara begins her training with Suresh in the simulator. The two pilot Titan Redeemer and fight a simulation of Onibaba. Amara, unable to maintain synchronization with Suresh, ends up costing them the battle and the simulation ends.
In the absence of Jake, Amara proceeds to spend much of her time alone with Sarah, a brain used as a substitute for a living co-pilot. Despite her numerous attempts, she cannot maintain a stable Drift connection with the brain. During that time, she learns of the death of Secretary-General Mako Mori.
When Jake returns, Amara offers her condolences for his loss. Jake tries to distract himself from Mako's death and tries to determine whether or not their Drift compatible. When Drift initiates, they got lost in Amara's memories and Jake witnesses Amara's perspective the Insurrector attack, and the death of her parents. Jake breaks the Drift and tries to console Amara after she breaks down over reliving her trauma.
Investigating Obsidian Fury
Later, after Jake and Lambert return from the Jeager Production Facility in Siberia with the damaged Obsidian Fury, Amara listens to the other cadets speculate over its origins and who could've built it. When Jinhai begins to tease Suresh about the number of Jaegers that would attend his funeral, Vik uses the opportunity to snipe at Amara, saying she'd heard Amara was found in "half a Jaeger".
Amara rushes to defend Scrapper, saying the Rogue Jaeger was a complete one, just not very big. Vik continues to diminish her machine, declaring "bigger is better". Amara attempts to defuse the situation and uses a Russian phrase she learned from Jinhai, thinking she told Vik to "calm down". Vik locks Amara in a headlock and begins to choke her.
Ryoichi and Jinhai attempt to diffuse the situation, but Vik won't allow it. Vik tells Amara that she's garbage that was picked off the street. Amara manages to reverse their positions; she flips Vik over her shoulder onto the ground and locks her head between her legs. Their fight is broken up by Lambert, who reminds them that they're a "family" now that they've joined the PPDC.
After the fight is diffused, Amara gets the idea of investigating the inside of Obsidian Fury. She convinces Suresh, Jinhai and the others to follow her inside. While studying the inside the Rogue Jaeger, Amara spots wiring stamped with Shao Industries logo. Her discovery is stopped short when Kaiju Blood drips onto Jinhai's arm and burns him.
He's taken back to the Shatterdome where his arm is treated, but Marshal Quan decides that Amara must leave the PPDC. While she's waiting in detention, Jake shares with her how his attempt to solo pilot a Mark-4 Jaeger resulted in his expulsion from the PPDC, and told her never let other people define who she is. Before she leaves, Vik tells Amara to build a "bigger Jaeger" the next chance she gets. Amara tells Jake that Obsidian Fury contains wiring from Shao Industries.
Drone Jaeger Attack
When Liwen Shao's Drone Jaegers are deployed across various Shatterdomes, they ambush the PPDC personnel, destroying the Jaegers stationed at the bases. Amara is caught up in the middle of the destruction, watching Titan Redeemer, Battle Witch, and Valor Omega try and fail to retaliate against the overwhelming forces.
Amara manages to catch up with Jake, Lambert, and the other cadets. They attempt to escape the destruction, only be cut off at various points by the destruction. They are eventually saved by the intervention of Liwen Shao, who destroys the Drone Jaegers using a feedback loop that destroys them.
Reemergence of the Kaiju
After the attack of the Kaiju-Jaeger Hybrids, Amara is called upon by Jake to aid in the repairs of the surviving Jaegers. With most of the pilots injured or killed, the Jaeger cadets, including Amara, are called in to pilot the Jaegers. Amara joins the crew of Bracer Phoenix to fight Raijin, Hakuja and Shrikethorn. After the three Kaiju combine into the Mega-Kaiju, Bracer Phoenix is destroyed, but Amara manages to eject along with the other pilots.
With Nate Lambert too injured to continue piloting Gipsy Avenger, the last Jaeger left standing, Amara chooses to co-pilot with Jake, ejecting Nate from the Conn-Pod and taking his place. However, Gipsy Avenger, having sustained too much damage, begins to cascade into a complete systems failure as Amara struggles to keep them online.
With Jake devising a plan to use one of Hermann Gottlieb's Kaiju blood-powered thrusters to reach the atmosphere, Amara is shocked but pleased when Scrapper arrives to help, remote-piloted by Shao. Shao is able to use the upgraded Scrapper to weld the thruster to Gipsy Avenger's hand and Jake and Amara fly the Jaeger, Scrapper clinging to its back, into the atmosphere where they use the Plasmacaster to adjust course so that Gipsy Avenger plummets toward Mount Fuji and kamikaze the Mega-Kaiju.
With her escape pod already ejected, Amara is forced to disconnect and be held by Jake to use his escape pod together. However, Jake's pod fails to launch. In the nick of time, Shao uses Scrapper to cut into the Conn-Pod and Jake and Amara use Amara's old Jaeger to escape. Gipsy Avenger's collison with the Mega-Kaiju destroys Gipsy Avenger, but kills the Mega-Kaiju.
In the aftermath, Jake and Amara emerge from the wrecked Scrapper and learn that Nate has captured the traitorous Newton Geiszler. Nate congratulates Amara who enjoys experiencing snow for the first time in her life.
Amara is a driven and independent person who learned how to take care of herself after the loss of her parents. While initially hesitant to work with others, her idolization of Jaegers and their pilots, as well as encouragement from Jake Pentecost, lead to her accepting others and forming partnerships. Amara doesn't hesitate to speak her mind and wears her heart on her sleeve, which can cause friction between herself and others, but also means she'll stand up when the situation calls for it.
Amara is a security hacker with the ability to exploit computer systems within Jaegers from studying Jaeger Tech. In addition to her hacking skills, she taught herself how to build Jaegers using spare parts left behind by the original Jaegers destroyed during the Kaiju War. Her knowledge of Jaegers is great enough that Jake called upon her to help repair the Jaegers damaged in the Kaiju-Jaeger Hybrid attack.
- Amara replaces Mako Mori (the original lead female character of Pacific Rim) as the female lead in Pacific Rim: Uprising.
- Amara's backstory mimics that of Mako Mori's.
- According to Steven S. DeKnight, Amara was originally written as a male character.[note 2]
- According to Cale Boyter and Steven S. DeKnight, Amara Namani was created because they felt Pacific Rim had no characters for children to relate to, and wanted the movie to appeal to a broader audience.[note 3]
- Producer Cale Boyter describes Amara as a "beach bum".
- Prior to Cailee Spaeny's casting, Amara Namani character design featured cyberpunk elements and long pink hair.
- "Namani" is a Japanese given name with one or more meanings, including "seven" and "sea".
- "Amara" is a West African given name meaning "grace" in Igbo.
- ↑ According to Cailee Spaeny, Amara's family is killed ten years before the events of Uprising.
- ↑ "[...]Amara was initially conceived as a male character: “…Just looking at the script it felt like it lost something if this was a young guy saying the things that she says, and it’s that almost indefinable quality that was really hard to peg down but we just all agreed when we started talking about it that it lost a bit of its magic,” said DeKnight."
- ↑ "Amara's journey to become a Jaeger pilot keys into making Uprising more accessible "I always thought Pacific Rim should have connected with kids, but there was nothing in the DNA of the original that really spoke to them," says Boyter. "Amara's this girl who walks into this programme and goes, 'Fuck yeah, I get to drive this motherfucker!' She's excited and motivated and that's fun to watch. That's what I mean by aspirational." [...]"I feel like a lot of movies I loved as a kid didn't have kids in them, so it's that fine balance."