James Gunn Says ‘Guardians of the Galaxy’ Is Marvel’s Biggest Movie Yet

Published 1 year ago by , Updated January 30th, 2014 at 1:04 pm,

First Official Guardians of the Galaxy Cast Photo James Gunn Says Guardians of the Galaxy Is Marvels Biggest Movie Yet

Phase 3 of the Marvel Cinematic Universe is coming together piece by piece, now that Ant-Man is putting a cast together that features welcome surprise additions like Oscar-winner Michael Douglas, Captain America 3 appears to have found its directors (i.e. the same guys responsible for the buzzed-about Cap sequel arriving in the spring) and Thor 3 has officially secured a pair of writers, who may bring a famous (and long-awaited) Thor comic storyline to life.

However, we’re still only part-way through Phase 2 and the next offerings on the menu from Marvel Studios look promising. That includes this sumer’s Guardians of the Galaxy, which is the company’s first non-Avengers movie to feature a non-established comic film property on the big screen in three years. Leading the charge is one writer/director James Gunn, who’s best known for his oddball indie genre features – sci-fi/horror Slither and costumed hero satire Super – as well as his equally off-beat scripts for the live-action Scooby-Doo movies from the aughts.

Empire Magazine – currently in the midst of a big marketing push for 20th Century Fox’s 2014 Marvel release X-Men: Days of Future Past – took a moment to discuss Guardians with Gunn; here’s what the latter had to offer:

“Visually, [it's] the biggest movie Marvel has made, because of the big, big starscapes and big action sequences. Our characters are basically all villains to begin with. If The Avengers are The Beatles, the Guardians are The Rolling Stones.”

Guardians will indeed be the first Marvel Studios project to really explore the sprawling and wondrous cosmic realm of the MCU; if audiences take to the final results, then it’ll open up the realm of possibilities for storylines and/or obscure space-based Marvel comic properties making the jump to the big screen in the future. That includes a title like The Inhumans, which has a fairly reasonable chance of being included as part of Phase 3 (more so if Guardians is a hit).

As for Gunn’s comment about how the Guardians start out as (in essence) anti-Avengers, that echoes something he previously said about how his space adventure rejects trendy cynicism and jaded attitudes towards caring for others as much (if not more) than yourself – or, as the filmmaker put it, “this is a movie that says it’s really OK to give a sh*t.” 

Guardians of the Galaxy Rocket Raccoon 570x333 James Gunn Says Guardians of the Galaxy Is Marvels Biggest Movie Yet

Additionall, Gunn commented on the (to put it mildly) unusual nature of the Guardians world/characters:

“There’s a lot of strange stuff in the movie. But I think the thing that makes it different from the rest of the other superhero movies out there is that they try and take something seriously that really can’t be taken seriously because the concept is just too fun at its core.”

Given that the eponymous lineup includes a talking alien tree and genetically-altered raccoon with a gun – and they might not even be the weirdest things in the movie – you can see what Gunn means about Guardians being something that “can’t really be taken seriously.” But, of course, the reason Gunn was sought to handle this project was because he’s someone who’s actually willing to dig beneath the surface of these bizarre characters and find the humanity within them; if he’s successful, then Guardians might not just be Marvel’s (visually) biggest movie – it might also be the young studios’ greatest artistic accomplishment yet.

The cast for Guardians of the Galaxy includes Chris Pratt (Parks & Recreation), Zoe Saldana (Star Trek Into Darkness), Dave Bautista (Riddick), Bradley Cooper (American Hustle), Vin Diesel (Fast & Furious 7) Lee Pace (The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug), Michael Rooker (The Walking Dead), Karen Gillan (Doctor Who), Djimon Hounsou (Seventh Son), Benicio del Toro (Savages), John C. Reilly (Wreck-It Ralph) and Glenn Close (Damages).


Guardians of the Galaxy opens in U.S. theaters on August 1st, 2014.

Source: Empire

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  1. Hoping for a big launch trailer sometime in February

  2. Biggest gamble, anyways.

  3. Never read one of their comics but it looks good. I am anxious to see it “taken seriously” because that is one of the problems I had with… Well, almost all of the other MARVEL movies.

    • I highly recommend reading them. Good stuff. I hadn’t read any until I heard they were making the movie. The first one I read was the Thanos Imperative and I was blown away. It references a lot of stuff that I hadn’t read yet, but it’s still very much its own story.

  4. I really cannot believe that Marvel is not taking the SuperBowl as an opportunity to launch GOTG into the mainstream! I think this will be a very big mistake and one that the obscure Guardians may not overcome.

    I am more excited for GOTG than any other Marvel movie but for some strange reason (At least to me) they do not seem to want to market it correctly, every other Marvel movie has had a trailer out 6-7 months in advance but GOTG STILL don’t have one and it sounds like they wont until April and the release of CA2…thats really confusing to me, I would think they would take the SB as a huge opportunity to introduce GOTG to ppl that may not even see CA2 in theatres, a whole Sh*tload of ppl watch the super bowl and a very good trailer could be all that is needed to get the GP excited and instead they are waiting for WHAT???
    This is the strangest decision Marvel has made so far and it might just be the wrong decision.

    • I agree…I think they missed an opportunity BIG time. My guess is that they really want to show case CAP:TWS and not want to have Guardians take away any of the buzz that Cap will generate from its Superbowl spot. Since Captain America is coming out in like a couple months they really want it to dominate the headlines right now.

    • Exactly.

      Superbowl ads are only seen during the event by American audiences and we all know that crucial American audience will be guaranteed to go see Cap 2 so Guardians would have really been able to benefit from such a huge audience seeing it who may not even watch superhero movies usually.

      It’s common sense and completely logical to use Guardians instead of Cap for their Superbowl commercial.

    • I would have to agree. More people will be watching the Super Bowl than people seeing Capt.2 in theaters.

      Some people only watch Super Bowl for the commercials. I’m one of them. They’re gonna miss out. By Comic Con 2014, they’ll have more than one trailer hopefully.

    • I’m gonna be the contrarian here and disagree.

      The people who would have no interest in Cap will surely have no interest in GOTG. The people that would be interested in GOTG will most likely be a subset of the people going to see Cap. So, get people hyped up for Cap, and then when they all go see it, hit ‘em with the GOTG trailer.

    • My guess is that they want the CGI to be perfect before they reveal anything. People could be quick to dismiss it if it doesn’t look pristine. Trailers with in-progress CGI scenes will hurt the marketing.

  5. Nobody knows who the Guardians are and The Superbowl will be watched by close to a 110 MILLLION people. Seems like a no brainer to introduce an unknown property.

  6. The thing that sets Marvel apart is the long term detailed planning. If Guardians is a big box office hit i can see Gunn getting the directors chair for Inhumans or Captain Marvel or both.
    If and when Whedon decides to move on he is setting himself up perfectly to take over in the future.

  7. I think what people tend to forget is that a super bowl spot is generally 30 seconds. That is NOT enough time to introduce such a layered and complicate group as GOTG. It may turn more people off as a WTF? moment IMO. It is better used to reveal Cap to the masses since most don’t hang on every story, rumor and shred of info on the interwebs as we do. :)

    • i see your point, all you really need for the 30 sec spot is caps shield, but if you go with GOTG people might only remember a Tree man or Racoon going Rambo on things

      • But people will be like “Google that honey.” Or “Aaawwwwhhhh raccoon with guns, so cute!” Or “HOLY CRAP RACCOON WITH GUNS!!! HECK YEAH!!!”

        • Sorry, but the mainstream reaction would be rather “Raccoon with guns…WTF?”, “Raccoon with guns…look, the new Pixar trailer is on!”

          Seriously!?! It is virtually impossible to have this talking Raccoon taken seriously outside the hardcore fanbase. That thing looks like right out of Kung Fu Panda or TMNT, not as part of a multi-billion-dollar project such as Marvel cinematic universe.

          Either this movie will surprise us all by outgrossing Avatar or it’ll be a total disaster…

  8. I hope this film will be way better than DC’s misfire ‘Green Lantern’ in both story & visual effects wise.

  9. I always figured Marvel wanted to go Cosmic moving forward so they took a gamble with GotG
    Now if it works out WOW
    We could be seeing Adam Warlock/Nova Corps/Kree/Badoon in future films

  10. Yeah I also believe that DC/WB is hoping is succeeds cause that means they would go Cosmic with a Green Lantern Reboot

    • And Martian Manhunter.

      And perhaps they’d be more willing to stick to a more traditional backstory for Wonder Woman and Aquaman.

  11. The superbowl is way to big a risk for the little gain. The movie is not coming out for another 7 months. A 30 second spot is like 4 million. The cap tailer was like 2+ minutes…that is like 16 million bucks for a single commercial. You run the risk of it either not capturing anyone’s attention or either it makes people laugh out loud due to the campyness of it at tree and a raccoon ( not really having time to get a grip on it to understand the concept in the middle of the superbowl ). And if the press jumps on board to make fun of it in its after superbowl commercial wrap up then it will be a lot of over and over imprinting on people that movie is bad.

    Seems way to chancy for such an expensive piece of real estate that is way to far out.

    Just my 2cents I am sure nobody will agree with. LOL.

  12. I thought tht vin diesel was in this movie, I didn’t see his name mentioned in the cast list…

    • He’s there, right after Bradley Cooper.

  13. You know, I had initially written this movie off as potentially being really stupid and Marvel risking a big flop, but, even though I’m still not fully sold on the racoon character, I’m finding myself getting more and more excite for this – especially because of the stellar cast.

    Not sure it’ll make huge bank, but it should do alright (i.e. at least make its budget back), and potentially even more if they sell it right and really promote the cast.

  14. The trailer will come out with GotG then Disney/Marvel will have close to 4 months to promote it and remember Age of Ultron first teaser will be with GotG so I think the movie is going to be a blockbuster

  15. Every new movie is their “biggest movie yet,” it’s just a meaningless claim. Nonetheless, I definitely am excited for GotG. Right now my excitement is more focused on Cap 2 since it’s closer to being here, but once that hits I’ll be dying to see GotG.

  16. This movie is risky, and the mid credits scene looked kind of strange. But I trust Gunn, I enjoy all his movies.

  17. This article should be re-titled : Marvel’s biggest gamble yet.
    But personally I like the cast members. I also heard the end credit scenes will tie to Age of Ultron.
    Oh well, at least it will break even.