‘Guardians of the Galaxy’ & ‘The Avengers 2′ Will Both Feature Thanos

Published 3 years ago by , Updated October 30th, 2013 at 9:21 pm,

Thanos Imperative 3 Art Guardians of the Galaxy & The Avengers 2 Will Both Feature Thanos

Six interconnected superhero films formed what is officially dubbed “Phase One” of the Marvel cinematic universe with The Avengers serving as the closing chapter. It wasn’t until last summer however, with Captain America: The First Avenger and Thor did moviegoers get introduced to the larger cosmic universe and the otherworldly characters it hosts.

The Tesseract, or the Cosmic Cube as it’s more commonly referred to as, became the McGuffin that drove the plot of The Avengers, forcing together the characters we met over the last few years and throwing them headfirst into a battle against Loki and his army of alien invaders. Loki was introduced in Thor and after putting on a show this summer, returns for his brother’s sequel Thor: The Dark World next fall. But as we learned during a few off-planet scenes in The Avengers, Loki was merely a servant of someone and something much greater.

When Joss Whedon was brought in to helm The Avengers he completely rewrote the script previously drafted by Zak Penn. Marvel President of Production Kevin Feige only had a few guidelines for what Whedon’s film must include: a Tesseract-powered portal opening in New York leading to an alien invasion. The Chitauri and their leader who showed up during the mid-credits sequence, Thanos, were selected by Whedon, and it was done so very intentionally.

Thanos in The Avengers  Guardians of the Galaxy & The Avengers 2 Will Both Feature Thanos

For years, Feige has namedropped the Guardians of the Galaxy as a property he and Marvel Studios were legitimately interested in adapting into a feature film in an effort to bring fans deeper into the cosmic side of Marvel Comics. If Iron Man were a B-List character before he got his own movie, the Guardians are D-List. The success and acceptance of The Avengers and its sci-fi elements has allowed them to take even greater risks and as we learned (officially) at Comic-Con, that’s exactly the plan. It’s always been a near certainty that Thanos would return for Guardians of the Galaxy but his role in the bigger picture plans for the future of the franchise hasn’t been so clear.

On the Screen Rant Underground podcast we talked in detail on several occasions about our theories of Guardians introducing a new set of characters to battle Thanos in a story that would serve as a lead-in to The Avengers 2 the following summer. Since that time, Joss Whedon signed to write and direct The Avengers 2 with a release date in May 2015, meaning it’s picking up where Guardians of the Galaxy will end. Can we then expect Thanos to be the primary villain of The Avengers 2? Yes.


Next: Thanos Creator Jim Starlin Spills the Beans


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  1. Uh oh, Thanos facing off against the Avengers and GOTG? Phase 2 is getting intense!

    • I heard about Latino Reviews saying that hulk will be the villian for avengers 3 will i think they are stupid and wrong thanos will be the villain for avengers 3 because he wont have a big rule in GOTG and not a big rule in Avengers 2 age of Ultron so why do the marvel illuminati thing when you can do Thanos yay a world war hulk for avengers 3 would be cool but that should be for avengers 4 for real think about it to make him the world war hulk thing we would need a doctor strange movie before 2018 if marvels doing a avenger movie every 3 years but since mark ruffalo has signed up for 6 movies it may work.

  2. So Thanos will be this phases Loki. I think the Guardians will probably recruit The Avengers to help them take down Thanos after Thanos acquires the Infinity Gauntlet.
    I have a felling that the Guardians inclusion will only happen once, they are a team themselves and i think Marvel will probably need to get rid of a character(s) to accommodate more. They cant have too many Avengers or it will just be a mess. I was thinking they were going to do that with the hulk but after the reaction he got from the Avengers i don’t know. They probably will just have him involved in the final fight.

    • like Joseph responded I can’t believe that some people can make $5029 in 1 month on the internet. did you look at this(Click on menu Home more information)

  3. what happened to the hulk why is there no movie title mention for him marvel better not forget the green badass who made the movie great

    • They are keeping him put away UNTIL Avengers 2, that way he doesn’t get played out in the meantime. Who doesn’t want to see Hulk VS Thanos?

      • Eddie, I just got goosebumps thinking about that battle!!

  4. I can see it now, Thanos dawns his gauntlet, Chaos ensues. I just hope they don’t “Super Shredder” it and we get to see the Infinity Gauntlet in full effect. It would be awesome to see Thor die and fight his way out of Limbo. Also would be a waste if The Red Skull never reemerges, that make-up was incredibly well executed.

  5. -If Thanos gets his glove, how about Thor gets his hat.

    • Thanos will not get Lokied. He is a badass. GOTG needs to end with Thanos dawning the glove and them recruiting help from the Avengers. They already have a great story in the Infinity Gauntlet, don’t stray too far away from that Marvel.

      • Can you imagine an after credits scene for this in which the Guardians are recruiting them but you don’t see who they are asking for help until the end of the scene. Then the Avengers 2 title is displayed. CHILLS!

        • Agree… I still feel the same chills everytime the Avengers teaser pops up whenever I rewatched Captain America, so I think eventhough we already know the possibility to that teaser, I’m sure it will give chills as well.

      • It’s “donning” not “dawning.” Just an FYI.

        • -i know. -no edit feature dude. Sorry if my typo offends you.

    • That’s okay, because I AM SOLD on James Gunn and Joss Whedon to carry a film.

  6. I hope the SFX on Thanos are better than the one pic above from “The Avengers.” He looks more like a villain in a computer animated cartoon like “Beast Wars.”

  7. If Thanos is gonna be in Avengers 2, what’s left for Avengers 3 though?
    You can’t really go bigger than Thanos IMO.

    • I think they mave save him for Avengers 3 and just use short scenes to show him pulling the strings/finalizing his plan etc.

    • Ultron? Masters of Evil? Dr. Doom when the rights revert? Galactus when a deal is made?

      • IMO Ultron (and certainly not the Masters of Evil) wouldn’t be as big a threat as Thanos is at his full strength…
        Galactus is, but until the deal IS made, he isn’t really an option.

        Personally, I’d have loved it if Avengers 2 revolved around Ultron (which ties into Ant-Man and a possible Black Panther intro) or the Masters of Evil (getting all the heroes’ arch-enemies to team up would be cool) and then saving Thanos for the third movie – i.e. giving enough time to really build up the tension…

        And as for Civil War (as Rob mentioned), I know Marvel is thinking about it, but I can’t really see it working that well with so many major players missing from the game (other studios’ rights) and having to tell such a large story in a 2-3 hour film.

        • These are movies not comics, nobody wants to wait 6 years or more to “build up tension” lol. Not being rude, I’m just sayin.

          • We’ve waited 4 years for The Avengers (ever since Fury uttered the words “you’re part of a bigger universe…”), and we’ll be waiting 3 years for Avengers 2, so why wouldn’t anybody mind waiting +- 5 years for Avengers 3/Thanos? – if anything, it’ll just make the epic battle between the Avengers and Thanos all the more well, epic.

    • Each other.

      CIVIL WAR.

      • that’s the first Hour of avengers 1

        • Nah, I’m talking about where Steve Rogers gets taken out and Bucky puts on the suit.

    • I hope it will have Ultron, then the fourth will have The Masters of Evil…

      Heck, I hope for a true to the comics battle of Kree and Skrulls. Super Skrull and Captain Marvel in one movie with The Avengers (since it will include Ant Man and other heros by then)? HELL YES!!!

      • Ultron leading the Phalanx, like in Annihilation: Conquest. However this time, they’ve take over Earth. It’ll be the resistance (part of the Avengers and some villains) versus the chosen (other part of the Avengers and some villains).

        We’ll see something like Capt. America teamed with Thanos verses Iron Man and Hulk.


      • and silver surfer, and maybe nova helping him out would be sick!

    • I bet Kang the Conqueror will be the villian in Avengers 3.

    • yes you can…his name is Galactus and would that be bad***?

  8. I believe Loki in Thor 2 will be somehow connected to Thanos getting/wanting the Gauntlet. Because he messed up the plan for Cube in Avengers already and is now after Loki. I also believe that maybe this is something to tease futher plots in GOTG, Avengers 2 etc. and will take place at the end of the Thor 2 or would also great if this is sub-plot in Thor 2 that only includes Loki.

  9. I really wished that marvel had been able 2
    secure the rights 2 use the silver sufer and galactis in the gotg film. That would have been hot!

    • Hell Yeah! Then we would have an Annihilation movie instead of GOTG. It would be sick to see Nova on the big screen.

  10. I feel a big battle coming on, Guardians teaming up with Avengers to fight Thanos in Avengers 2 maybe? That’s a lot of heros. So,Thor:TDW leads into Guardians, Cap: TWS leads into Antman, I’m wondering if we’ll have an Iron Man cameo in ANTMAN.

    Loving Phase 2!!! THANOS!!!

  11. i’m just curious as to why jim starling is being pissy about this. i was under the impression the publishers (marvel) retain the rights to characters, i just assumed that was a standard deal. if not, does that mean he could take his creation to dc? or maybe his original deal with marvel didn’t include any film/tv adaptions of his characters.

    • You’re right. Marvel or it’s legally entitled entity, owns the rights to all the characters. The individual creators hold no rights. Starlin doesn’t own anything, Stan Lee himself doesn’t own anything, the estate of Jack Kirby or any other writer/artist. If Starlin wanted a piece, he should have fought for it back then. He made the choice to work for Marvel and write for them. He knew what he was doing. Sure, it would have been nice for Marvel to buy him a ticket to one of the movies. But they’re under no obligation to.
      I think that’s why you see a lot of guys leave the big two in that early ’90′s period, the Liefelds, Jim Lees, Todd McFarlans of the world. They wanted their own piece, to own their creations and have more control. More power to them for being able to do that. It revolutionized the comics industry at the time. Made them a lot of money. Maybe Starlin is just jealous that it wasn’t like that then. Then, again, Starlin’s creations were all of that D-list level. There’s almost no way he could have realistically been able to profit off of owning his creations anyway. He needed the main guys to prop up his creations.

      • Depends on his deal and it can be unique per talent.

        Rob Leifeld for instance, earns royalties on all appearances of Deadpool.

        I don’t know what grounds Starlin has if he were to pursue legal action (or even if he would do such a thing), but with Thanos acting as the Phase Two baddie and Marvel (at the time) attempting to bring him back in the books, it would be BAD to have him angry and speaking out against them after The Avengers earned a billion plus.

        • Yup, it’s no about legal obligation, it is about moral obligation.

          Remember that the comic and videogame fanbases are very loyalty-oriented, these fanbases don’t like to see the creators they admire being downplayed or mistreated on the big move, after all, these movies are a celebration of their work.

          It was a dumb move for Marvel not to take him to the premiere and tell him where were they taking his character, if only because have they done so, he would have spoke even more positively, giving more good press.

          • Eh I can see why they wouldn’t have done so since they were looking to keep a tight wrap on the Thanos reveal. As for the Infinity Gauntlet in Thor that came across as an afterthought Easter Egg to the fans so tiny I suspect no one really thought it necessary to acknowledge Starlin.

            If anything I think show the Infinity Gauntlet in the vault is more a problem that they didn’t know they were going to have. My guess is that the idea for using Thanos and perhaps the Gauntlet didn’t take shape till Joss Whedon got involved with tweaking Captain America. As it stands I still think the gem in Loki’s staff in the Avenger’s is the mind gem which would suggest the Gauntlet or parts of the Gauntlet are no longer in the Vault.

    • It’s about respect, as in you wouldn’t have had this to work with if this person hadn’t given it to you. A good example of this was with the whole Giger/Alien fiasco. Ridley Scott gets Giger to come in for the design work for Alien and he designs the creature. He did not work on Aliens but James Cameron respected his contributions enough to at least give the man credit for the designs the entire then budding franchise was based on.

      Then Alien 3 happened and the studio pretty much crapped on the man and didn’t even give him a mention which Dark Horse was even respectful enough to do with their comics based on the property. Both this film and Alien Resurrection were fraught with controversy over the degree of Giger’s involvement and FOX’s habit of cutting Giger off or omitting his credit as the creature creator. They did finally make some changes to the home releases years later to acknowledge his contributions.

      For Giger (and to a lesser extent, fans of the franchise) it wasn’t about the money at all. And for Prometheus, Ridley went right back to Giger directly for the design aesthetics.

      I don’t know how many times I’ve seen other comic films with “so-and-so created by Stan Lee/Jack Kirby” from other studios yet THE Marvel Studios couldn’t even be bothered to give mention to Starling. It does come off a bit of a slap in the face.

    • Thanos is a bit different, because Starlin created the character before he came to Marvel, thus he’s not work for hire.

      • But to be fair, when Starlin initially created Thanos when he was at college, he admitted that the character didn’t look anything like the way Thanos ended up looking in the first issue he appeared in…
        I believe the concept of Thanos was a lot skinnier and shorter, but someone at Marvel wanted him to look more like Darkseid so they changed things up a bit.

    • Most comic artists and writers over the years who created characters that went on to make Marvel or DC money don’t have anything good to say about the way they were cut out of the financial windfall from all the cross-licensing. Kirby and his family sued everyone under the sun over this issue, and it was one of the key factors in guys who started Image walking away from Marvel back in the 90′s.

      The companies own the characters outright, but at the time most of these deals were done there was no real multimedia use for these properties, so it never came up.

      • Same thing with Jerry Siegel’s family. They sued for the image rights for Superman and won, that’s why they ditched the red underoos and changed other aspects of his costume.

  12. Can you say: “Ka-Ching!”

  13. So how much is Disney-Marvel going to pay 20th Century FOX to reacquire the rights to SILVER SURFER and GALCATUS for an incredible phase 3 showdown?

    • Fox would want the whole d*** bank account of Disney /marvel!

    • You know… let’s just hope the FF reboot will not move forward so smoothly, so that the rights can revert back to Marvel… XD
      (Yeah, I don’t want to wish bad stuff like that, but if it’s for the best… then I’m okay)

      • I’m not only wishing it, I expect it. It’s Fox. They’ll mess it up.

    • P.S. Phase 3 should be CIVIL WAR story arc

      • That’s why they must do all they can to get Spidey back.

        • exactly…Civil War story arc allows for a more grounded storyline (compared to Phase 2′s cosmic one) and allows us to get into a deep dive of the characters. not them just bashing aliens.

        • I heard SONY is down for having their new Spiderman appear in Avengers… (Well of course they are!)… But the real problem is trying to work out a deal with Disney. -I sincerely doubt Marvel/Disney wants to SHARE.

          Disney should just buy out SONY and FOX completely.

          Think of the possibilities! Simpsons PIXAR movies!!! Disney:Playstation 4

    • but if thanos destroys the guardians there cant be a sequel, and if theres no sequel then we’ll never get to see Quasar or Cosmo on the big screen!

      • Cosmo comes with Knowhere. If Knowhere is in the GOTG movie, Cosmo will be there but won’t leave base. Same with Mantis, she must be in the movie, she is a key part to the team; she pretty much formed it after the Conquest Event.

  14. am i the only one who would disagree with the sentiment that iron man was a B-List hero before he got his own movie? personally, i’m more of a DC guy but i’ve always regarded iron man as a definite A-Lister in the Marvel universe. if he was B-List, i didn’t realize that!

    • I think it refers to the general public awareness pre-movie and pretty much agree with Iron Man being B-Listed, keeping in mind international awareness. He’s in good company though, this is how i’d generally break it down pre Marvel’s Phase One (from the perspective of the general public who don’t know their Marvel from their DC).

      (in no particular order)
      A-List (Recognizable to most)

      Wonderwoman (arguably B-List but like Hulk, old TV series may make them more familiar).

      *Captain America (sounds familiar, but what’s he look like again? – I used to get that alot here in Australia until the film came out… seriously!)

      B-List (May have sounded familiar to some, before their feature films.)

      Green Lantern
      Iron Man
      The Flash

      C-List (Most had never heard of these before their feature films.)

      Fantastic 4
      Martian Manhunter
      Black Widow
      Green Arrow
      Ant Man

      D-List (I am the geekiest person I know and I only learned of these once they got the feature film treatment!)


      • Sorry for any obvious omissions, and yes I realize some listed have not yet seen the silver screen.

      • Martian Manhunter is def D-List

        • He really is NOT…For most of its history, he was considered the “heart” of the JLA.

          Sambo’s rankings work on the basis of recognition. YOUR comment simply sounds like annoyance.

          • But who outside of comic book circles even know who the JLA are, let alone Martian Manhunter?

            Nobody, that’s who.

            That’s why I agree with the other guy that MM is D-list but to edit the list, I wouldn’t put Aquaman, The Flash, Green Lantern or some of the others in B-list at all. I’d have them lower.

            A lot of the comic book movie and comic book discussion on this website from those who frequent it (not the writers of the site) seems to be mostly those who know their stuff and in that sense, they either seem ignorant of the fact that the wider public have no idea who Iron Man is until his movie came out or just refuse to believe that outside of Spiderman, Batman and Superman, nobody else in comic book land was very well known whatsoever.

            • That IS true, but his sheer longevity on the team’s roster and his exposure in various mediums and versions (“Smallville” and “Justice League”/JLU come immediately to mind in recent history) has opened him up to the probability of a higher ranking.

              Furthermore, if you drop him down to D, you would necessarily have to do the same for MOST of the characters mentioned above…at least pre-current/recent film/show appearances. The logic of one applies to the rest.

              • I intended it like this, those who are familiar with Superman would also be familiar with the other A-listers.

                Those who are familiar with Iron Man would likely be familiar with the other B-listers.

                And so on.

                I also agree that Fantastic Four could be bumped up. I also intended this only as a sample from my ‘Australian’ perspective. I expect each country in the world would have a unique list really, not to mention every individual.

                And I would be highly interested to see how those lists might vary.

                • And I would have filed knowledge of JLA or Avengers existence/lineups under C-List.

      • ah ok cool. thanks for the breakdown!

      • Some people don’t know their Marvel from their DC… others don’t know that SPAWN is NEITHER, Spawn is of IMAGE Comics, he had a short crossover with Batman, but that’s all there was to that.

        And as far as IMAGE goes… Spawn is definitely on their A list.

        • Thanks for the info Eddie. Did not know that.

        • spawn may be on IMAGE’s A-list, but on ALL superheroes as they are known, or unknown, to the general movie-going public he would def fall in the C to D list. I think a high C myself since the HBO show and the movie gave him lots of exposure, but that has been YEARS now.

          • Agreed @jeffro. I also class Spawn as a D-lister before the film only. High C, Low B after film imo, but that’s a whole other list i guess.

      • Being a comic book fan, I obviously know every one of these names. Fantastic Four might actually be more B-list than C. They’re in between mainly because of their longevity, their importance to many big Marvel storylines, and that they appeared in other media besides comics. Some people may say they’re a solid B.

        • Agreed. I remember the T.V. show aired here in Australia in the 80′s when I was a kid.

      • GOTG is on my A-list but I’m a space geek and there’s not too many of us around.

    • Iron Man, Captain America and a lot of characters connected to the Avengers had a legacy popularity to a point, but when Marvel set them off after Onslaught for a sort of reboot it kind of pushed them to the B team so to speak. For most of the 80′s and 90′s Spider-Man, X-Men and Hulk were the top sellers for Marvel.

    • Yeah I disagree with the assessment that Iron Man was a B-list character before the movies. I base that mostly on having cartoon series and appearing in video games previous to the movie.

  15. Civil War wold be too much for one movie. Now if you go back in time a bit then Secret Wars would be the way to go

    • Civil War would cover all of the Phase 3 movies

    • I would love to see a Secret Wars movie!

      Galactus dropping the mountain range on all the heroes and them having to get the Hulk really angry to save them would be worth the price of admission alone.

      • agreed…while having to use Captain America’s shield as the only thing to deflect his consuming power.

    • Only problem with Secret Wars is that it had a lot of characters belonging to other companies (SpiderMan, X-Men, Galactus, just to name a few)

  16. I have a feeling that Thanos will eventually gather up Red Skull, Mandarin, MODOK, and the other villains… to make the fight even more ‘personal’ for the Avengers. Whedon said that the team will expand, so I’m sure Thanos will not be alone on the Phase 2 as well…

  17. I can see the GOTG getting defeated by Thanos. Drax and Groot get killed, Quill and Rocket heavily injured, and Gamora or Mantis head off to warn Earth’s Mightiest Heroes.

    • Groot couldn’t be killed, he can regrow from just a twig of his original body

  18. GOTG, where is the silver surfer at in this thing…

  19. Roger Wardell, the mystery twitter guy who knows so much about marvel films, totally tweeted this yesterday, he said that Thanos was going to be the architect of all the bad things that happen in Phase 2, so don’t expect to see him only in the Avengers 2, interesting he tweets that and then we have a story to follow it up.

    • He tweeted it AFTER a few sites had put it up. Most of his tweets are like that. The only one he was early on was The Falcon, but even that was name-dropped earlier in the summer by the brothers Russo.

  20. oh man im am getting so excited for phase 2 and thor and everything else

  21. this means that the Guardians will fail at the end of the movie

  22. with all of the cosmic stuff coming into play…couldn’t it be possible that a Planet Hulk plotline could be the next Hulk movie?

    Hulk gets captured/beamed/whatever to another realm/planet where they are putting together gladiator games of the universes strongest contenders….

    may be a stretch but hey why not?
    it could be cool for Marvel to have a play on the comics where Hulk puts on the armor. would be super cool to see in live action lol

    • I like the idea but I think that Hulk needs a movie where he’s the hero more. In both movies, they treat him like the villian so much. The Avengers finally got it right because he helped “saved the day”. IH did that a little with the battle of Abomination but he immediately ran away as he was being chased.

  23. Will Guardians of the Galaxy feature THANOS in the same way that THOR featured Hawkeye?

  24. The story arc that I envision for Marvel regarding Thanos is this:

    Guardians of the Galaxy battle Thanos sans Infinity Gauntlet. Thanos is beaten….. barely. And somehow his loss causes him to be thrown back in time 1000 years or so, since GOTG takes place way, way in the future.

    Thanos, in our era, sometime after his mid-credits scene from Avengers, locates and acquires the Infinity Gauntlet from Odin’s vault in Asgard.

    Chaos ensues. Bring on the Avengers part 2.

    • Lmao! What are you talking about? The 2008 GOTG team takes place during the Marvel Civil War.

    • I wouldn’t have put it as crudely (rudely?) as Guardian Outlaw ;), but he is right. The GotG movie that Marvel is making, is based on the 2008 series, which took place in the “present”.

      • “rudely?” Hey, I actually lol’ed after reading his post. When they 1st announced that the movie was going to be made, them using the 2008 team was the 1st thing they mentioned (look at the concept art). It is kind of hard to miss that they won’t be using the old team with Astro (Major Victory) as leader.

        • I was just messing around with you man ;)
          But not everybody knows all the detail and has all the info about these movies.

      • Sorry about that! My GOTG knowledge is limited since I never read the comics…….. original version or the more recent take on it. I knew of GOTG but not the details.

        So take out the last sentence of the first paragraph of my above comment. 1000 year time-slip not necessary.

        The big question is, WHEN does Thanos acquire the Infinity Gauntlet. Before GOTG, during GOTG, or after? Before Avengers 2? During Avengers 2? I can’t imagine Thanos not having it for the epic Avengers 2 battle.

        It becomes even more complicated if Thanos has to collect the individual gems, like the comic. From the quick scene of Odin’s vault it appears that the gems are already in place.

        Funny how things connect…….. Mandarin is the main villain in Iron Man 3 and he has an assortment of rings with different gems that give different powers…… just like the Infinity Gauntlet’s gems.

        It would be cool if Marvel tied them together somehow. Mandarin’s gems and the Infinity Gauntlet gems.

        • @Avenger, I know, I’m just playing too.

          @Heustis, Who knows? We will have to wait and see. Because Asgard is in a different area, maybe when it is lost from the vault, the gems scatter across the kree galaxy. Thanos obtains all of the gems in GOTG and summons the eternal dragon. Idk lol

  25. So if the Avengers have to take on Thanos would that battle be in space?
    (Sorry not much of a comic reader but watched alot of marvels animated series in the 90′s as a kid lol)

  26. I hope the villain will be Galactus in one film

  27. Sweet i love the idea of thanos being in the avengers sequel that was one of my hopes for the movie, i’d probably be excited about gaurdians of the galaxy becasues they just landed a director and they no officially have a villain but truth be told i don’t know that much about them but that won’t stop me from seeing it