- A third “Guardians of the Galaxy” film is in the works, directed by James Gunn.
- British actor Will Poulter will star as the popular Marvel comic-book character Adam Warlock.
- “Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3” is set for release on May 5, 2023.
Chris Pratt and his “Guardians of the Galaxy” costars are teaming up for a third installment set for release in 2023.
“Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3” will be helmed by returning writer-director James Gunn and feature existing cast members from the franchise: Pratt as Peter Quill/Star-Lord, Zoe Saldana as Gamora, Karen Gillan as Nebula, Dave Bautista as Drax, Pom Klementieff as Mantis, Bradley Cooper as the voice of Rocket, and Vin Diesel as the voice of Groot.
The film will also introduce new faces to the Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU).
Here’s what fans can expect from “Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3.”
‘Dopesick’ star Will Poulter is joining the MCU as Adam Warlock
The British actor is known for roles in “The Chronicles of Narnia: The Voyage of the Dawn Treader,” “We’re the Millers,” “The Maze Runner,” “Black Mirror: Bandersnatch,” and “Midsommar.”
The introduction of Adam Warlock in the MCU was first teased in an end-credits scene in 2017’s “Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2.”
One scene showed Ayesha (Elizabeth Debicki), the High Priestess of the extragalactic race known as the Sovereign, talking about how to defeat the Guardians by way of a new plan.
Ayesha told another Sovereign that the birthing pod in the room was “the next step in our evolution. More powerful, more beautiful, more capable of destroying the Guardians of the Galaxy.”
“I think I shall call him Adam,” she said, referring to Adam Warlock.
Many fans theorized that Adam would appear in “Avengers: Infinity War” or “Avengers: Endgame” as part of the Infinity Saga, given the characters’ history of wielding the Infinity Stones in the comics. In the source material, Adam also formed a group called the Infinity Watch to protect the stones.
Adam wasn’t part of either of the aforementioned films, with the Avengers instead going back in time to collect all the stones and defeat the Mad Titan known as Thanos (Josh Brolin) with Tony Stark/Iron Man’s fatal finger snap.
In the comics, Adam has blonde hair, golden skin, and glowing eyes. His superpowers include telepathy, superhuman agility, superhuman stamina, and the ability to manipulate energy.
Poulter’s casting as the powerful character was reported by Deadline in October 2021.
Gunn confirmed the news shortly thereafter on Twitter, writing: “Welcome to the Guardians family, Will Poulter. He’s an amazing actor and wonderful guy. See you in a couple weeks.”
In response, Poulter said, “Thank you, James. It’s a genuine honour to play this role and to work with you. I’m very excited to get to work.”
—Will Poulter (@PoulterWill) October 12, 2021
During an appearance on “The Jonathan Ross Show” in October 2021, Poulter played coy when asked if he’ll be painted gold for “Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3.”
Weeks later, the actor told Variety that he feels “very honored to have been welcomed into the Marvel family.”
“Everyone I’ve interacted with there is great and [I’m] very excited to be part of a franchise like ‘Guardians,’ which I regard to be like, one of the most creative and unique,” he added.
Poulter also told GQ Hype that he was drinking protein shakes and training in preparation for his Marvel role, which he landed after
auditions and an in-person screen test with Gunn in Atlanta, Georgia.
Chukwudi Iwuji has a mystery role in the film
Iwuji portrays Clemson Murn on Gunn’s
The actor told The Hollywood Reporter in January 2022 that he was “speechless” when Gunn approached him about a role in the new “Guardians” movie while on the set of “Peacemaker.”
He couldn’t share many details about his role, but described his character as “extremely powerful” and “complex.”
“He’s certainly one of, if not the most complex characters we’ve seen in the freaking Marvel universe,” Iwuji added. “So he’s deeply complex and deeply powerful, and I hope intriguing. I hope I bring that to it.”
“After working with him on #Peacemaker I wasn’t about to let go of one of the best actors I’ve ever worked with – so I gave him the role most every big name actor in Hollywood wanted. #TalentAboveAllElse,” Gunn wrote on Twitter about casting Iwuji.
Sylvester Stallone confirmed his return as Stakar Ogord in a since-deleted Instagram post
On November 12, 2021, Stallone posted videos on Instagram showing the process of face duplication. He was vague in his caption and didn’t specify what project he was working on at the time, but the post was shared shortly after filming for “Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3” began.
“For those interested what goes on behind the scenes for filmmaking. Here’s just a very small part of it. Face duplication,” he wrote.
The movie will be emotional, according to Gunn and the cast
Gillan said that she and Klementieff had a passionate reaction to the script.
“We read it in the same room together, and then looked at each other and we were in floods of tears,” she told Yahoo in September 2021, describing the movie as “so emotional.”
“You’re learning more about existing characters and on a deeper level. I’m really excited at exploring Nebula, post-Thanos,” she added.
Gillan told the same story to Collider, adding that the upcoming movie is Gunn’s “strongest work yet with the Guardians and it’s just brilliant. It’s brilliant and it’s emotional and it’s funny and it’s all of those things that you want.”
Gunn shared similar comments about the weight of the movie in an interview with Entertainment Weekly a few months prior.
“For ‘Guardians 3,’ the script has basically been written for a long time,” he said. “I’ve been playing with it in little ways over the years, but it’s basically stayed the same since three years ago. It’s pretty heavy actually. It’s a heavier story, so it’s an emotional process to go through.”
After the first day of shooting “Guardians 3,” Pratt also teased “a delicate, emotional, funny, wild, complicated scene” that “everyone absolutely killed.”
“So grateful to be puppeteered by my friend and brother the mad genius @jamesgunn Oh My God I promise you… this movie will be worth the wait. #gotgvol3,” Pratt added.
Gunn said that fans will need to watch the ‘Guardians of the Galaxy Holiday Special’ before seeing ‘Guardians 3’
The special is written and directed by Gunn and set for release on Disney+ in late 2022 around the holidays.
Gunn told Collider that the holiday special will be less than 40 minutes long and a precursor to the third film.
“It’s in-canon, it’s about the Guardians, you’re gonna learn stuff that you need to learn before you see ‘Volume 3,’ and it’s great,” he said, “I’m really, really happy with it.”
‘Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3’ will be the final installment of the franchise for this team
“This is the end for us, the last time people will see this team of Guardians,” Gunn said during an appearance on Deadline’s “Hero Nation” podcast in January 2022.
“It’s so, so big and dark, and different from what people might be expecting it to be,” he added. “I just want to be true to the characters, the story and give people the wrap-up that they deserve for the story.”
The film is currently slated to hit theaters on May 5, 2023
Filming began on November 8, 2021. Gunn and the stars marked the occasion by posting a Polaroid featuring Poulter, Klementieff, Iwuji, Sean Gunn (who has portrayed Kraglin and is a motion reference actor for Rocket Raccoon), Pratt, Saldana, Bautista, and Gillan.
“It’s been a strange & long & at times challenging journey to get here, but the obstacles along the way have only made this moment more blissful. Back on set with my Guardians family for the first day of shooting #GotGVol3,” the director captioned his Instagram and Twitter posts.
“Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3” will be released the same year as two other MCU films, “The Marvels” (February 17, 2023) and “Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania” (July 28, 2023).