Writer/director James Gunn is set to deliver the much-anticipated Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3 in the next few years, which promises to wrap up the story of Star-Lord and his fellow cosmic crusaders. Infamously, pre-production on the threequel has been far from plain sailing, as the filmmaker was fired by Marvel last summer following a controversy surrounding his offensive past tweets.
Back in March though, Disney made the decision to reinstate him on the movie. Gunn has remained quiet on the situation since then, but he’s finally broken his silence on the topic in an illuminating interview with Deadline. When asked what he was most upset about when he thought he wasn’t going to be able to make Vol. 3, the director revealed that not completing the story of Rocket would’ve been “a big loss” for him.
“When you asked me what was saddest for me when I thought it was gone—and anybody at Marvel can tell you—it’s this very strange and attached relationship to Rocket. Rocket is me, he really is, even if that sounds narcissistic. Groot is like my dog. I love Groot in a completely different way. I relate to Rocket and I feel compassion for Rocket, but I also feel like his story has not been completed.
He has an arc that started in the first movie, continued into the second and goes through Infinity War and Endgame, and then I was set to really finish that arc in Guardians 3. That was a big loss to me—not being able to finish that story—though I was comforted by the fact that they were still planning to use my script.”
Gunn’s always been open about how he relates the most to Rocket out of all the Guardians, and from what we’ve heard of his script so far, it sounds like the threequel will put the spotlight on the trash panda even more than in previous films. After all, Vol. 3 is expected to reveal Rocket’s creator, the High Evolutionary, a role that could be played by Mark Hamill.
One rumor’s even claimed that Rocket will also get a love interest in the form of Lylla, an augmented otter who’s another creation of the High Evolutionary. The raccoon has been through a lot in the past few movies – he lost his family in Infinity War and then found them again in Endgame – so he definitely deserves some personal happiness.
Reports say Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3 could shoot as early as next year, meaning a release date in 2021 is possible. As such, expect more news to trickle in soon.