Marketing a big studio tentpole can be a tricky proposition, as trailers attempt to sell the movie to die hard fans and casual viewers while preserving its secrets. These days, it’s become common for theatrical previews to include spoilers, unfortunately diminishing the impact of seeing the final product on-screen for the first time. Marvel’s Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 is employing a different strategy. Its advertising materials are based more around the cast of characters than the actual plot, and the trailers are using alternate takes of jokes to keep as much under lock and key as possible.
Trailer scenes that aren’t in the final film can be extremely frustrating in their own right (for people curious to see how a certain beat played out), but from a certain point of view, it’s a solid approach that all but guarantees there will be some surprises when the movie finally premieres. In the case of Vol. 2, writer/director James Gunn has now confirmed there is one sequence from promotion that audiences will not see on the big screen this summer.
On Twitter, Gunn responded to a follower who was apparently grossed out by the teaser depicting Drax disgustingly slurping and chewing on a bowl of food as the team sat around a campfire. Gunn himself thought the bit was funny, but it apparently wasn’t meant for the actual film:
I’m with you on finding the chewing/slurping gross! I found it funny but had hesitations about it. (It’s not in the movie for the record). https://t.co/DsuNmlGIbP— James Gunn (@JamesGunn) March 1, 2017
This ultimately shouldn’t be the biggest deal, as this was just an amusing moment to highlight the now-famous Guardians brand of humor. It would be one thing if Gunn was talking about a thrilling action set piece that had many excited (like the showdown against the monster on Sovereign), but few will be upset about missing out on Drax eating. The short trailer tease is a perfect illustration of the balance Disney/Marvel needs to find when promoting any of their films. Fans would be rubbed the wrong way if advertising was blatantly misleading, but there’s no harm done in including smaller beats that are humorous on their own in order to showcase the film’s tone. And besides, Drax is poised to steal the show by being funnier than ever, so he isn’t going to be shortchanged here.
In the end, what matters most is Guardians of the Galaxy 2 being an excellent film that entertains people in the theater. Once the movie actually comes out and people see what Gunn has in store, its trailers (however enthralling they are) will start to fade away from memory. The previews have done their job in raising awareness and anticipation for Vol. 2, and Marvel should have another hit on their hands come May – regardless of which jokes made the final cut or not.
Source: James Gunn