By the looks of it, and according to everyone involved in the film, it seems like Marvel’s Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 is going to be even bigger and more expanded than the first film. Focused on a much more personal story this time around, that being the relationship between Peter Quill/Star-Lord (Chris Pratt) and his biological father, Ego the Living Planet (Kurt Russell), while also featuring even more inventive and colorful space battles than before, it seems like writer and director James Gunn is doing everything he can to deliver once again, with some mighty high expectations to try and live up to after Chris Pratt even called it the biggest spectacle film of all time.
Based purely on the trailers that have been released for Vol. 2, it seems like a majority of the film’s humor is still going to be based around the chemistry and dynamic of the Guardians themselves, with both Baby Groot (Vin Diesel) and Drax (Dave Bautista) getting the biggest laughs in the trailers, so much so that it looks like Peter Quill won’t be the only team member who’s story gets expanded in the sequel.
While recently speaking with Collider at the Sundance Film Festival this year, Bautista talked briefly about working on Vol. 2, Drax’s role in it, and how the character’s drives and goals match up more with the central themes of the film than they ever have before:
“It’s an extended version of the first film, for the Drax character. There’s just a lot more … most people’s first perception of Drax would be he’s just a big, muscly brute, and he’s just going to go in and be an all-action character. But he’s more funny, driven … there’s a lot more of that. He gets closer and more caring with the other Guardians, and they become more of a solid family in this one. If I had to put a tag on this second film I would say ‘family,’ that’s kind of the theme.”
This isn’t the first time someone involved in Vol. 2 has teased Drax’s bigger role in the film, and just recently, even James Gunn himself talked about how Drax is “blowing people’s minds” in test screenings. Considering the promise that Bautista showed as the character in the first film, the firm grasp on both the character’s lovable qualities and the comedic timing he seems to have developed too, it’s exciting to see Gunn and co. willing to give him a much larger spotlight to shine in with the sequel. Even if some of his biggest jokes seem to be centered around Peter Quill and Gamora’s (Zoe Saldana) relationship (so far at least).
Bautista’s career has been on a steady uphill climb over the past few years also, not only landing a role in the last James Bond film Spectre, but also having a major role to play later this year in Blade Runner 2049, so it’s not necessarily a surprise that both Gunn and Marvel to give him a bit more to do in the sequel either. What will be interesting to see is how well Drax does handling the changing dynamics and emotions of his team members, especially since after the deaths of his loved ones, they’re really the closest thing to family that he has now. But with Quill struggling to come to terms with his own family and past, it seems like Gunn has carefully crafted an emotional story with this sequel that (hopefully) allows each and every single one of the main and supporting characters to play a role and grow throughout it – Drax especially.