The Guardians of the Galaxy are back.
The first trailer for James Gunn’s “Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3” is here, and it’s a doozy. Set to a lushly orchestrated version of English indie band Spacehog’s “In the Meantime,” which indicates that Quill’s Zune has some songs that stretch beyond the 1970s-era classics of the first two movies, the clip is equal parts thrilling and emotional.
Gunn’s patented, rollicking “Guardians of the Galaxy” tone is very much in place – we love their candy-colored spacesuits and a multi-armed Groot firing weapons. But there is an undercurrent of extreme melancholy as well. Gunn has said that this entry is devoted to Rocket’s backstory, and it seems like it could be the end of the road for our favorite wise-cracking raccoon. (Side note: Who is his otter friend!?)
Of course, this wouldn’t be a “Guardians of the Galaxy” movie without a supersized threat. And this entry has a pair of them: Adam Warlock (Will Poulter), a super-being created by Ayesha (Elizabeth Debicki) to go after the Guardians and the High Evolutionary (Chukwudi Iwuji), a mad scientist responsible for the creation of Rocket (Bradley Cooper). We see both of them in the trailer and both look like fierce opponents.
The new cast members join Chris Pratt (Star Lord), Dave Bautista (Drax), Zoe Saldaña (Gamora), Vin Diesel (newly beefy Groot), Karen Gillan (Nebula) and Pom Klementieff (Mantis). Sean Gunn, Sylvester Stallone, Maria Bakalova (introduced as Cosmo in the recent “Guardians of the Galaxy Holiday Special”) and Michael Rosenbaum will also return.
While the last proper “Guardians of the Galaxy” film was released back in 2017, they have appeared in 2018’s “Avengers: Infinity War” and 2019’s “Avengers: Endgame.” Earlier this year, the characters co-starred in “Thor: Love and Thunder,” and the very charming “The Guardians of the Galaxy Holiday Special” just premiered on Disney+. They’ve also starred in two Disney theme park attractions – Disney California Adventure’s Guardians of the Galaxy – Mission: Breakout! and EPCOT’s Guardians of the Galaxy: Cosmic Rewind.
Among other things, this third “Guardians of the Galaxy” movie will be notable for being the last time writer/director James Gunn interfaces with the characters (and the larger Marvel Cinematic Unvierse), as he was recently appointed co-CEO and co-chairman of DC Studios with Peter Safran at Warner Bros. Discovery.
Thankfully, it looks like Gunn saved his best for last.
“Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3” blasts into theaters on May 5, 2023.