Concept artist Jerad S. Marantz has unveiled an early iteration of Mantis' look for James Gunn's Marvel Studios sequel Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2. Of course, Pom Klementieff was cast as this Marvel Comics character, and she ended up bringing her own comedic charm to the part and making a major impression in the process. For many, Mantis was one of the best things about the film.
Speaking to Screen Rant about her Guardians of the Galaxy debut, Klementieff explained that various parts of Mantis’ appearance are enhanced by CGI. On set, she has smaller antennae and manifold dots all over her face. In post-production, Klementieff's performance is married with CGI wizardry to bring the character of Mantis fully to visual life.
And now, Marantz has allowed fans to glimpse a different take on what the character of Mantis could have looked like in the film. The concept artist took to Instagram to share a design that he made for Marvel while the film was in its pre-production stage:
Early #mantis #conceptart for #guardiansofthegalaxyvolume2 I did this design in #zbrush and was going for in organic luck. The entire costume was going to be made out of red leaves. #gotg2 #gotg #creature #marvelmovies #marvelcinematicuniverse #characterdesign #comicbookmovie
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Clearly, this version of Mantis is highly unlike the version that ended up on screen in the finished film. The differences are numerous: her antennae are more curved; her hair is purple instead of black; her skin is green instead of white; her eyes are white instead of black; her body is covered in little contour-like lines; and, perhaps most interestingly of all, her outfit is comprised completely of leaves. It’s altogether a more insect-like design, with Mantis’ appearance in the finished film being a lot closer to that of an ordinary human being.
This isn’t the only alternate iteration of Mantis that was devised during the concept art phase, either. Another bug-like version was revealed already, featuring a Mantis costume that looks like intertwined vines. Yet another piece of Mantis concept art included green skin and a red dress. It’s interesting that none of these designs are particularly close to the final product. Clearly, Marvel and Gunn considered various different ideas before settling on their favorite Mantis design.
Fans of Klementieff’s Mantis will be pleased to hear that her next three Marvel Cinematic Universe appearances have already been confirmed: the feeling-altering adoptive daughter of Ego will be seen in Avengers: Infinity War, Guardians of the Galaxy 3, and Avengers 4.
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