The firing of James Gunn from Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3 has created quite a few complications for the MCU, among which is the issue that the film’s subsequent delay may well have left us hanging on the introduction of Adam Warlock teased at the end of Vol. 2. And while fans were speculating earlier this year that the character’s arrival might be coming as soon as last April’s Avengers: Infinity War, we now know that directors Anthony and Joe Russo had other plans in mind.
The evidence for that old and mistaken fan theory was Adam’s role in the Infinity Gauntlet comic, which sees the cosmic hero lead Earth’s surviving heroes in a post-genocide fight against Thanos. But as Joe Russo stressed at the recent Q&A hosted by Collider, the MCU is less concerned with staying faithful to the source material than telling its own original stories.
“We had a lot of pre-established characters and sometimes characters from the books, again, being a comic book fan, I don’t want to see a literal interpretation of a comic book I’ve read a hundred times because I don’t wanna go to a theater and know exactly what’s going to happen,” Russo shared when asked why Warlock was omitted. “For me, it kind of ruins the experience of going to a movie. And sometimes we’ll take the arcs that have been assigned to different characters in the books and reassign them to other characters. Or we’re just taking inspiration from the books and really deviating from the storyline, in which case, the characters aren’t applicable to what we’re trying to do in the Marvel Cinematic Universe.”
Unless the Russo Brothers have an Adam Warlock reveal lined up for Avengers 4, there’s a chance that the character won’t be making his MCU debut until Guardians 3, and if the recent reports are anything to go by, that could mean waiting until as late as 2022 for his introduction.
Perhaps that isn’t the prediction that fans want to hear, but for what it’s worth, the Russos offered their assurance at the same talk that the delay of the third Guardians movie had no effect on the content of Avengers 4, despite actor Dave Bautista previously hinting that the hold-up may necessitate rewrites in the Avengers: Infinity War sequel. Regardless, we’ll find out if any comic book favorites make their entrance via the Russo Brothers’ next release when the film arrives in theaters on May 3rd, 2019.