The Russo Brothers are currently filming Captain America: Civil War, while Scott Derrickson has already left for London to go start principal photography soon on Doctor Strange - meaning that the first two film installments in Phase III of Marvel's Cinematic Universe are moving along, right on schedule. That also goes for the Guardians of the Galaxy sequel, which already has a completed script draft by James Gunn and has tentatively begun casting new characters (with new cast announcements likely to arrive in the second half of 2015).
Gunn's Guardians followup (which he's both writing and directing, of course) and Marvel Studios/Sony's Spider-Man reboot have for a while now remained the only Phase III movies without official titles, since they were initially announced. Rumors persist that new Peter Parker actor Tom Halland is going to wind up headlining The Spectacular Spider-Man in 2017, but the newly-confirmed Guardians sequel title is comparatively less colorful.
Marvel President of Production Kevin Feige off-handedly referred to the Guardians sequel as Guardians of the Galaxy Volume 2 during a recent interview with Collider, but neither confirmed nor denied that he had used the official title. Well, now that the cat's out of the bag, Gunn has confirmed that yes, that is the real title - with his Facebook post on the matter reading as follows:
Yes, the official title of the sequel to Guardians of the Galaxy is Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2.
Kevin Feige recently let the title slip while doing Ant-Man press, which I'm really happy about because God knows I've let more than one thing slip accidentally while chattering away on this FB page.
Also, hats off to some intrepid fans who figured out the title a couple of days after I posted the cover page. More than one person guessed "Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2" - I wanted so badly to give you props at the time, but knew I had to wait.
For Kevin to mess up. Haha.
PS ANT-MAN PREMIERE TONIGHT AND I AM STOKED!
Most of the Marvel Studios movie franchises to date have gone with subtitles for their sequels, save for the Iron Man films and now Guardians. Using 'Volume 2' rather than just '2' will not have any real effect on the general public's interest in the Guardians' next adventure, of course, but the lack of a telling subtitle (a la Winter Soldier, Civil War, Age of Ultron, and so forth) does make it more difficult to extrapolate what the sequel will be about from the title alone. Then again, Volume 2 isn't drawing from a Guardians comic book storyline, so a subtitle might've not been all that enlightening, for that reason (whereas 'Vol. 2' is a charming reference to Peter Quill's (Chris Pratt) second mix tape from his mom).
Based on what we've heard so far, Volume 2 will not only have as much (perhaps even more) heart as the first Guardians of the Galaxy movie, but may be even weirder and more idiosyncratic - meaning, the sequel may bear an even stronger resemblance to Gunn's non-Marvel work than Guardians 'Volume 1' did (see films like Super or Gunn's Dawn of the Dead remake script), while still fitting the tone of the MCU, of course. That suggests Volume 2 has the potential to be another satisfying stand-alone cosmic Marvel flick, but one that still sets up key events in future Phase III releases.
Ant-Man opens in theaters July 17, 2015; Captain America: Civil War – May 6, 2016; Doctor Strange– November 4, 2016; Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 – May 5, 2017; Spider-Man reboot – July 28, 2017; Thor: Ragnarok – November 3, 2017; The Avengers: Infinity War Part 1 – May 4, 2018; Black Panther – July 6, 2018; Captain Marvel – November 2, 2018; The Avengers: Infinity War Part 2 – May 3, 2019; Inhumans – July 12, 2019.