With ‘Avengers: Endgame’ crossing the $2 Billion mark faster than Thanos’ snap dusted half the universe, an era of Marvel films spanning eleven years and 22 films in what is called the ‘Infinity Saga’ has now come to an end. While ‘Endgame’ proved to be an emotional and befitting closure to years of superhero storytelling for a lot of our favourite superheroes, a lot of them in the MCU cannon still have a lot to tell in their stories, and that is where and how the Phase IV of the MCU would pan out.
Despite things being kept strictly under wraps, ‘Spider Man: Far From Home’, a Guardians of the Galaxy sequel completing the trilogy, a Black Widow solo origins film, a Doctor Strange sequel, a Black Panther sequel, an Eternals film and a Shang Chi film are the ones that are currently in various stages of development, except for the Spider Man sequel that is due in July. Among these, ‘Guardians of the Galaxy: Volume III’ has been in the news the most among the unannounced ones, and infamously so. The director of the previous two films, James Gunn, who was also touted to return to complete the trilogy of his ‘Guardians’ films, found himself at the back end of his offensive tweets controversy, something that he was eventually able to find a way out of, when Disney rehired him last year for GOTG 3. Without commenting personally on the controversy, we now know that things are in absolute order to start moving for ‘Guardians of the Galaxy 3: Volume III’, and here’s all that we know about the film.
Guardians of The Galaxy 3: Plot and Recap
Along with the obvious prequel, ‘Guardians of the Galaxy: Volume II’, the majority of events that I predict will be outlined in the third instalment that would pan out from the instrumental role of the Guardians, especially Gamora, played in ‘Infinity War’ and ‘Endgame’. So, to recapitulate, while GOTG 2 ended on a pretty self-contained note, the film did have as many as five post credits scenes that teased where the future of the Guardians could go.
Guardians of the Galaxy: Volume II Post Credits Scenes
Among the entire series of mid and post credits scenes that GOTG 2 has, I suspect at least 3 of them to have a major bearing on the events of GOTG 3. The first one among them would be Kraglin acquiring Yondu’s telekinetic arrow and control-fin, accidentally hurting Drax while trying it. While this is played out for laughs mostly, Kraglin’s appearance in the final battle of ‘Endgame’ tells me that he will begin to have a much larger role in the Guardians’ journey, especially after Yondu’s heartfelt farewell at the end of GOTG 2. The second, also character related, would be the one involving Stakar Ogord, played by Sylvester Stallone, reuniting with his teammates and re-forming the Ravagers. Now, while the Ravagers did appear in the battle against Thanos, Stakar was nowhere to be seen, and that could partly be due to Stallone being an A-List star. However, in the sequel, I expect him to fully transform into Stakar’s alter ego Starhawk, that would also spell out greater screentime and a more fleshed out, consequential role for Stallone.
The third one is obviously the one I am most excited about. In an attempt to get back at the Guardians for swindling her, she creates an artificial being of a higher intelligence and strength, capable of destroying the Guardians of the Galaxy, and decides to name him Adam. This unmistakably is a reference to the celestial being Adam Warlock in the Marvel Universe, whose reference has long been anticipated in the MCU. If anything, this post credits scene confirms that, while also opening up entirely new opportunities.
Guardians of The Galaxy 3 Theories: The Events of Infinity War and Endgame
The primary bearing that the events of ‘Infinity War’ and ‘Endgame’ would have on future films, and not just GOTG3, would be the twisted timelines and the creation of a possible multiverse, as has been confirmed from the first looks of ‘Spider Man: Far From Home’. Apart from all or most future films in the MCU being set in the “current” of the MCU timeline, that is now five years since the events of ‘Infinity War’ in 2023, the other major bearing that basically allowed this film to happen would be that following Hulk’s snap in ‘Endgame’, the guardians that were lost in dust are now back, and that would include Star Lord, Drax, Groot, and Mantis, apart from the surviving Rocket and Nebulla, the latter too finding her siding with the Guardians this time around.
However, the fate of one spinal character still hangs in the balance as it has been since the events of ‘Infinity War’, and that would be Gamora, who wasn’t dusted by the snap but sacrificed by Thanos in exchange for the soul stone. In a savoury twist of events, Gamora was found to be alive and well after having made her way to the current timeline from 2014 when she was alive, but hadn’t met the rest of the Guardians yet. She ultimately turned back on Thanos again and helped the Avengers defeat him, but there is still no saying whether she survived Tony’s snap or not, something that the Russo brothers have confirmed that will only be answered in ‘Guardians of the Galaxy: Volume III’.
Apart from Gamora’s fate and a possible sub-plot involving Star Lord searching for her in the sequel, albeit the 2014 version of her in the hope that lightning can strike the couple a second time, another interesting possibility opened up in the final scenes of ‘Endgame’, and that would be involving none other than the God of Thunder himself, Thor, who steps aboard the Guardians’ ship and declares the team to be ‘Asgardians of the Galaxy’, his rapport with Groot and Rocket immediately visible and palpable, or as he likes to call them, Tree and Rabbit, along with a bit of alpha-male tension on the Benatar between Thor and Star Lord. Now what I would really love to pay for is a duel with knives between Star Lord and the God of Thunder.
Guardians of The Galaxy 3 Cast
No surprises here but the moment when the majority of the Guardians were dusted by Thanos’ snap back in ‘Infinity War’, we knew they would be coming back since the sequel to GOTG 2 was announced right after it released, and they did so in the final sequence of ‘Endgame’ quite spectacularly, save Gamora. In fact, the fate of Gamora as discussed in the previous section is what can primarily affect the course of action in the film. Given this information and since no official announcement has been made, it would be a reasonable bet to assume that Chris Pratt, Dave Bautista, Bradley Cooper (voice), Vin Diesel (voice), Pom Klementieff and Karen Gillan would be returning to reprise their roles from previous films as Star Lord, Drax, Rocket, Groot, Mantis and Nebulla (who is now a part of the Guardians given the events of ‘Endgame’) respectively.
As discussed in the previous section, Gamora’s fate yet again hangs in the balance, and we will have to wait till Marvel makes an official announcement to know whether she made it out of Tony’s snap or not. Also, and this might rather be a wish seeking fulfillment, but if Marvel could arrange for Thor to return, even for a cameo of sorts with Chris Hemsworth in ‘Asgardians of the Galaxy’, that would really add a lot of mileage to an already loaded movie. Apart from the regulars, we can also expect Sylvester Stallone and Sean Gunn to reprise their supporting roles as Stakar Ogord and Kraglin respectively.
Guardians of The Galaxy 3 Release Date
Surprisingly so, Disney and Marvel have managed to keep all the films in their next slate, their developments and supposed release dates under wraps, and admirably so. Mind you that this is the same MCU that had the entire slate and interweaving storylines planned years in advance, as would appear from their numerous post credits scenes teasing the next film or phase at the end of each new release. Although, that doesn’t mean that the execs at Disney and Marvel are too busy counting the cash registers after the smash success of ‘Endgame’.
According to reports, there are as many as 5 new Marvel films in the works, ‘Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3’ being among them, along with a grand plan to merge newly acquired properties by Disney into the MCU. That unsurprisingly would mean that even though there isn’t a set release date for GOTG Vol. 3; there is a working, overarching script in place, and even after the whole James Gunn firing and rehiring fiasco, the film is very much happening. Optimistic timelines would put ‘Guardians of the Galaxy 3’ release date to be somewhere in the second half of 2022, given that Gunn would only be able to work on completing his trilogy of ‘Guardians’ films after wrapping up work on WB’s new ‘Suicide Squad’ movie, which is expected to go on floors next year, prepping for a 2021 release.
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