James Gunn Talks Fighting For THANOS And Prepping For GUARDIANS OF THE GALAXY Sequel

Spoiler warning! The director talks lengthily about casting Josh Brolin as Thanos as well as what he's planning, and maybe avoiding, while prepping the Guardians of the Galaxy sequel. Check it out!

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By DCMarvelFreshman - 7/31/2014
Although the first Guardians of the Galaxy draft by co-writer Nicole Perlman had already envinsioned the big bad Thanos as the main villain of the movie, writer/director James Gunn recently revealed that he had to fight for the Mad Titan's brief appearance. “I wanted Thanos in the movie,” Gunn told reporters. “I wanted to be attached to The Avengers. Admittedly, Thanos was a giant pain in the ass because I had to talk with Joss Whedon and those guys. That was the one part where there were a lot of discussions. At a certain point, I think everyone just gave up, and we just did what we wanted.” In a seperate interview with Vulture, James Gunn was asked why he and Whedon choose Josh Brolin to play Thanos in Guardians and beyond. “Thanos needed to be this imposing character,” he replied. “He needed to have weight to him. So it was about finding the right person to fulfill that role, and we actually auditioned a lot of people for Thanos. That role really is a big commitment, because as everyone has guessed, Thanos is a big part of the Marvel universe going forward, and his role is likely to expand greatly. It was a big challenge to cast.” Even though Brolin's casting was revealed ahead of Marvel's announcement, we didn't find out until three months prior to the film's release this weekend. “He was brought on later, and we were good at keeping it quiet, so it didn’t come out for a long time,” said the director. “My brother Sean read for Thanos on set, and then we motion-captured Josh later on down the line, when we got back to Los Angeles.” He continued, “Josh was definitely the last person on board and we worked for a couple of days doing his motion capture. He is great for the movie. I don't think he knew what he was getting into. I think he's overwhelmed by all the attention he's getting for Thanos. And I know he was really unprepared for the movie. He was really excited when he saw the film. It really felt good.”

On the heels of Marvel Studios taking to San Diego Comic-Con last weekend to announce that Guardians of the Galaxy 2 is already set for release July 28, 2017, James Gunn has also been teasing his plans for the sequel. “Yes, I suppose this is ballsy considering the film hasn't even been released yet,” he said in a Facebook post, “but I guess I just can't let go of that damn raccoon!” Despite it seeming that Guardians 2 is being fast-tracked, Gunn says, with the 2017 release date, he actually has a whole year longer to develop the sequel than he did the first movie. “Frankly, I just want to put my all into the next movie,” he told The Wall Street Journal's Speakeasy blog. “I'm going to sleep for three months, and then hopefully we'll get back into the Guardians and take them down the road,” he added. “I've had ideas from the beginning about where these characters go and what can happen with them, so I'm just excited about choosing what aspect of that journey we choose to do next? I think [solo movies] are always possible, but I doubt that would be the next step.” In additional recent interviews, director James Gunn seemingly got a bit more specific about what is in store for Guardians of the Galaxy 2  in terms of which elements and characters he plans to utilize next time, and those that he doesn't.

“I know a lot of things about Drax and Rocket that have yet to come” he told The Playlist recently. “And it's really not so much about what those stories are but how those will be partitioned in films – how much we tell in any one of these films. I know a lot about Peter Quill's father and there's only three people that do – me, Kevin Feige, and Michael Rooker. And I only told Rooker because he's delivering him to his father, so I had to tell him the backstory of all that.” Also, like Michael Rooker's Yondu character, Gunn was asked if he has plans for other members of the original Guardians of the Galaxy team from the comics.  “I'm saving them,” he teased. “You'll have to wait and see, but I definitely have plans for other Guardians.” He later hinted that having almost every character with some sort of cybernetic enhancement could “be taken to a much greater degree.”“I find that stuff fascinating... All those guys have stuff in their bodies, even Drax,” he added. Possibly regarding elements that may not be used in the sequel, Gunn was then asked about about Richard Rider aka Nova and how he was in early drafts for the first movie.: “I think certain people really like Nova. Quite honestly, I really don't care. He's not a favourite character. I don't know whether he's ever going to show up... I like the Nova Corps, I just don't like Nova that much! He's okay, you know? I just don't like that helmet!” Lastly, Den of Geek asked the director if he worries that he will have to repeat the way he uses music in the first movie for the sequel. “I do, but I don't think I'm going to,” he replied. “I don't necessarily want to have to take the template of the first and use it as on the second. We've got to move forward, take a risk. Do something different.” What do you think?


Marvel’s Guardians of the Galaxy expands the Marvel Cinematic Universe into the cosmos, where brash adventurer Peter Quill finds himself the object of an unrelenting bounty hunt after stealing a mysterious orb coveted by Ronan, a powerful villain with ambitions that threaten the entire universe. To evade the ever-persistent Ronan, Quill is forced into an uneasy truce with a quartet of disparate misfits–Rocket, a gun-toting raccoon, Groot, a tree-like humanoid, the deadly and enigmatic Gamora and the revenge-driven Drax the Destroyer. But when Peter discovers the true power of the orb and the menace it poses to the cosmos, he must do his best to rally his ragtag rivals for a last, desperate stand - with the galaxy’s fate in the balance. Marvel’s Guardians of the Galaxy is presented by Marvel Studios and stars Chris Pratt, Zoe Saldana, Dave Bautista, Bradley Cooper as the voice of Rocket, Vin Diesel as the voice of Groot, Lee Pace, Michael Rooker, Karen Gilian, Djimon Hounsou with John C. Reilly, Glenn Close as Commander Rael and Benicio del Toro as The Collector. Distributed by Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures, the film opens August 1, 2014
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120 Comments
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batz11 - 7/31/2014, 9:08 AM
Tonight baby!
m0th3r - 7/31/2014, 9:12 AM
Got my 7pm tickets already
JordanKing - 7/31/2014, 9:12 AM
1 hour to go! :D
DylansMyDog - 7/31/2014, 9:14 AM
Can't wait :)
AXE - 7/31/2014, 9:16 AM
Still a long time to go for me until I get back from my trip -_-
AXE - 7/31/2014, 9:17 AM
Gotta avoid the comment section pretty soon
Gusto - 7/31/2014, 9:18 AM
Axe...we'd all have no problem with that.
Gusto - 7/31/2014, 9:18 AM
Thank you!
Tip your servers!
EzioKenway1225 - 7/31/2014, 9:19 AM
Josh Brolin is gonna Kill it as Thanos..cant wait to see it!!
DaVinci31 - 7/31/2014, 9:21 AM
Less than 24 hours to go now . . .

batz11 - 7/31/2014, 9:22 AM
Oh Gus, you're funny...looking...

yossarian - 7/31/2014, 9:25 AM
kinghulk - 7/31/2014, 9:27 AM
"Despite it seeming that Guardians 2 is being rushed"
really despite the fact the film is 3 years away?
batz11 - 7/31/2014, 9:27 AM
^ Geezus
sKeemAn - 7/31/2014, 9:30 AM
Got my tickets for tomorro night. I cant wait to finally see Thanos in full body action.
batz11 - 7/31/2014, 9:30 AM
Doesn't like Nova, wtf?



sKeemAn - 7/31/2014, 9:31 AM
@yoss

Thats the only thing the MCU is missing!!
venom0706 - 7/31/2014, 9:31 AM
Seeing it in 4 hours. I am so excited! Can't wait to see the Star Wars of the MCU.
sKeemAn - 7/31/2014, 9:32 AM
@batz

I cant tell if he's serious or joking. But that is dissapointing to say the least.
JoJo1982 - 7/31/2014, 9:32 AM
So we might get future characters like Major Victory, Adam Warlock, and Quasar in the sequel!!!!


I'm too damn excited!!!
batz11 - 7/31/2014, 9:34 AM
Me too, I first thought serious, but knowing Gunn, probably just f.uckin' with us...I hope!
JoJo1982 - 7/31/2014, 9:35 AM
@kinghulk

Yeah that's the best part, is the sequel won't feel rushed, since they announced the sequel a good 3 years before it comes out
MercwithMouth - 7/31/2014, 9:36 AM
@yoss

Hilary Duff... Damn, sexiness

"“I think certain people really like Nova. Quite honestly, I really don't care. He's not a favourite character. I don't know whether he's ever going to show up... I like the Nova Corps, I just don't like Nova that much! He's okay, you know? I just don't like that helmet!”"

Ummm.. @NovaCorpsFan is gonna be pissed! But hey, at least we know Fillion won't be Nova!
DeusExSponge - 7/31/2014, 9:36 AM
Doesn't like Nova? Well all I hope is that we get a hint that Richard Rider exist in the MCU. Maybe Rhomann Dey will be sent on a mission during the final phase of the movie and the rest is history.
AXE - 7/31/2014, 9:38 AM
no more mr nice guy, I'm goin dark


@Gusto shut it old man, you'll miss me the day I'm gone
kinghulk - 7/31/2014, 9:40 AM
he doesnt like nova's helmet, that makes me think we might get a helmetless nova just like we got a helmetless thor. i really like nova's helmet, hes got a cool design.
EzioKenway1225 - 7/31/2014, 9:40 AM
he even said that the Guardians werent his favorite either ..he really liked them but they werent his favorites.. him not liking Nova is dissapointing but it seems he is joking about it too
sKeemAn - 7/31/2014, 9:40 AM
I think Nova's helmet is very cool. If there's a movie he should actually wear it unlike some other characters (Thor).

StarYeezus - 7/31/2014, 9:42 AM
Helmet-less Nova is NOT an option.
sKeemAn - 7/31/2014, 9:42 AM
^^Agreed
EzioKenway1225 - 7/31/2014, 9:43 AM
Gunn is a big comic book fan.. he even reads comics today.. he has said his favorite comic out right now is Hawkeye by Matt Fraction and David Aja
TelaVizion - 7/31/2014, 9:45 AM
I wish the sequel was coming out next year. Can't wait for you all to see the movie.
TelaVizion - 7/31/2014, 9:46 AM
Nova would only wear the helmet in battle. Other than that, he won't be wearing it through most of the movie.
EzioKenway1225 - 7/31/2014, 9:47 AM
i really wanna see Quill meet his dad
DoubleDion - 7/31/2014, 9:49 AM
[frick] THIS GUY AND [frick] HOWARD THE DUCK
NovaCorpsFan - 7/31/2014, 9:49 AM
... Damn right I'm pissed.
batz11 - 7/31/2014, 9:49 AM
NovaCorpsFan - 7/31/2014, 9:50 AM
But I just saw the film and loved every second of it, so I can't hold a grudge.
SniktBub - 7/31/2014, 9:50 AM
We need Nova tho. Gunn said something about Starlord's father, so will J'son and the Spartax come in later? Also, Peter is being delivered to his father? I can't wait another 12 hours
Pasto - 7/31/2014, 9:51 AM
Imagine a film with a helmet less Nova. That's just painful to think about. That's like a mask-less Spider-Man, or shield-less Captain America, or hell, a helmet less Thor. It's stupid, and wouldn't work.
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