The working title for Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3 has been revealed as "Hot Christmas." The production's future has been under intense scrutiny since Disney fired James Gunn as the director. The main cast has been vocal about supporting Gunn, and Dave Bautista has expressed his hesitancy to do the third installment without him. But at this point, none of the stars have dropped out, and it appears Disney is proceeding as planned.
Although Chris Pratt stated that production for the third installment was set to start in 2019 prior to Gunn's exit, it's reportedly been rescheduled for February 2021. Disney had indicated that it was still planning to use the script written by James and Sean Gunn. James Gunn's vision was that Guardians 3 would set up a decade's worth of Marvel movies, and expand the cinematic universe beyond the Avengers-centric pool of characters. However with shooting taking place much further down the line, it's possible that some continuity changes will take effect, since the film will come out later in Marvel's Phase 4. It's looking considerably less likely that a reconciliation with Disney could bring James Gunn back into consulting on the project, following his plans to direct DC's Suicide Squad 2.
As reported by Production Weekly, the working title for Guardians of the Galaxy 3 will be "Hot Christmas." Although the Guardians 3 title doesn't appear to be based on any preexisting comic book materials, fans can now look out for production updates for "Hot Christmas" in order to keep updated about the Marvel threequel. The working title is simply a production code used to try to keep it secret from prying fans; for instance, the Avengers: Infinity War working title was "Mary Lou," which doesn't have any significance.
The events of Avengers 4 will deliver the next set of clues about where the Guardians end up. With Zoe Saldana's return as Gamora, fans are banking on the whole band coming back together next May. However, trying to assemble all the A-listers more than two years from now could result in conflicts. Pratt's Jurassic World 3 is scheduled to be released in summer 2021, Saldana's appearance in the unconfirmed Star Trek 4 project is in question, and Bautista recently expressed interest in Suicide Squad 2.
Although "Hot Christmas" is just the working title for Guardians of the Galaxy 3, and as such, likely holds very little insight into the actual movie, a holiday theme has the potential to become a unique and hilarious superhero experience. The goofy buddy comedy vibe of Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2, combined with Peter Quill/Star Lord's heart-wrenching discovery about his mother's death, as well as Gamora and Nebula's blossoming sisterhood demonstrated that the franchise can succeed at tone-blending.
One of themes of the series has always been Peter, a child of Earth and chaotic outer space, showing his hardened alien companions empathy through beauty and benevolence in human cultures. Christmas could be perfect device for continuing that theme. Extraterrestrial variations of the Santa myth, interplanetary gift exchanges, or a call to protect an unborn savior from a villainous overlord could create a fantastic adventure. However, again, a working title doesn't necessarily reflect anything about a film's plot or setting, so "Hot Christmas" being the working title for Guardians of the Galaxy 3 doesn't confirm it's a Christmas movie.
Source: Production Weekly
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