The motion-capture actor playing (teen) Groot in Avengers: Infinity War has indicated that the character will be coming of age in the film and finding himself a role model. With Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 proven to be another solid hit for Marvel Studios, all eyes are on how the Guardians will interact with the rest of the characters in the MCU when they meet up in Infinity War. Of particular interest is how the much-loved walking tree that is Groot will fare upon meeting Steve Rogers, Tony Stark, and the other members of the Avengers.
With Groot sacrificing himself at the end of Guardians of the Galaxy, his return as Baby Groot (as cute as the little rascal was) is tempered by the fact that this is not the original character, according to director James Gunn. Hence, his hilarious misunderstandings and horrible bomb-control in Vol 2 were all part of his learning process and growing up. This was underlined by the brilliant post-credit sequence in the sequel, where Star-Lord (Chris Pratt) chides the teenage version of Groot for the state of his room, whilst the moody plant dude sulks under the verbal onslaught. The growing cycle of Groot is indeed something that will be addressed in Infinity War, by the sound of it.
While Vin Diesel is still voicing Groot, and Gunn mo-capped for Baby Groot, the lanky Teen Groot is being played by noted motion-capture performer Terry Notary. The actor previously trained as a gymnast and a performer with Cirque du Soleil, before becoming a movement coach and actor in Hollywood. He played Rocket in the Planet of the Apes trilogy, as well as Kong in Kong: Skull Island, among other CGI creature movie roles. Speaking to Yahoo! Movies, Notary discussed Teen Groot and dropped some hints as to what to expect from him:
"Yes, I am playing teenage Groot. I'm having a blast with it. It's really, really fun. I can't say too much about him, but he's coming of age, so you'll see the teenager find a mentor to look up to and to model himself after. The character's great, and the films are going to be great. We've got such an amazing cast and a great pair of directors at the helm. The Russos allow the actors to jam on scenes together to the point where it just feels great and everybody gets their moments."
It's interesting to hear that Infinity Way will show Groot literally 'growing up', but perhaps the most intriguing aspect of this response is the reference to Groot finding a 'mentor' and somebody who will be a major influence on him. It could be somebody in the Guardians team already, like Star-Lord. However, it sounds more likely to be another authority figure, like Captain America (Chris Evans) or Iron Man (Robert Downey Jr.). We can only wait and see, but it sounds like Teen Groot will have a significant arc to his character.
As with most of the cast interviews for Avengers: Infinity War, it's also nice to hear Notary refer so positively to the directing Russo brothers and the amount of freedom they're giving the actors with their performances. Every bit of news only seems to point towards what an epic movie this is going to be for Marvel Studios, and for Groot apparently.
Source: Yahoo! Movies