The Guardians of the Galaxy franchise has made a point to have Peter Quill be the only Earthling, but that could change in Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3. Ever since he was abducted from Earth in the '80s, Quill has been one of the only Earth-based characters to venture into the cosmos. His unique heritage made him a natural fit for the cosmic side of the MCU, but director James Gunn didn't want to include fellow Earth heroes to make sure Quill's presence further set him apart from the other alien characters that would be encountered.
While this mandate for no Earth-based characters has worked in the past and still allowed for the team's roster to expand, eventually it would seem this rule would have to be broken in order to truly set up the Marvel Cosmic Universe. One of the characters that is most requested to soon debut has been Nova - another character from Earth - but he's been left out thanks to this anti-Earth policy. However, that appears to be changing.
Gunn is already working on crafting Vol. 3 and has a general idea for what it will entail. Even though the roster was just expanded to include Mantis, the third film will be end of this iteration of the team and launch the next 10 years of the MCU. With that in mind, introducing some more cosmic heroes is a necessity and Gunn has now stated on Facebook (via MCU Exchange) that heroes of all kinds are on the table - including more Earth-based ones.
This may not confirm that any other Earth-based heroes will be present in Vol. 3, but at the very least, it does show a willingness from Gunn to include them. Whether this could be a tease of Richard Rider or Sam Alexander's Nova being brought into the fold remains to be seen, but establishing a leader within the Nova Corps - the real space cops of this universe - as a major character could further open the door for separate cosmic franchises.
Even if this does not directly pertain to Nova's inclusion, the sheer possibility of Earth-based characters makes it possible that characters like Vance Astro aka Major Victory, Wendell Vaughn aka Quasar, or Jack Flag to appear. Also, if Gunn is interested in bringing some of the Guardians' new Avengers pals into the fold for Vol. 3, Iron Man, Captain Marvel, and many others could also be in consideration. Plus, if Marvel has secretly worked out a deal for the Fantastic Four as many have hoped, bringing The Thing or the rest of Marvel's first family in could work too. Either way, this just further expands the cosmic realm and could indicate the arrival of a few fan favorite characters.
- Spider-Man: Homecoming (2017) release date: Jul 07, 2017
- Thor: Ragnarok (2017) release date: Nov 03, 2017
- Black Panther (2018) release date: Feb 16, 2018
- Avengers: Infinity War / The Avengers 3 (2018) release date: Apr 27, 2018
- Ant-Man & The Wasp (2018) release date: Jul 06, 2018
- Captain Marvel (2019) release date: Mar 08, 2019
- The Avengers 4 / Untitled Avengers Movie (2019) release date: May 03, 2019