Why James Gunn Hesitated To Direct ‘Guardians Of The Galaxy: Vol. 3’

In his Facebook Q&A, James Gunn revealed the reason why he chose to wait before deciding to return to direct a third Guardians of the Galaxy movie.


During his Facebook Q&A session, James Gunn revealed one of the reasons why he wasn’t completely committed to making a third Guardians of the Galaxy movie at first. The reason itself is heavily tied to one of the sequel’s biggest spoilers, so if you haven’t seen Guardians of the Galaxy: Vol. 2 yet, turn back or enter at your own risk.

As noted by Entertainment Weekly, James Gunn explicitly stated that he wouldn’t want to make a movie without longtime collaborator Michael Rooker in it, as the two have worked together on a number of projects (including Slither, Super, and The Belko Experiment). Rooker’s Yondu would not be in Guardians of the Galaxy: Vol. 3 because – spoiler alert – he dies at the end of Vol. 2.

“Let me tell you, there was nothing harder for me than the choice to kill Yondu in this movie. Michael Rooker, for all the crap I give him, is one of my closest friends in the world and the last thing I wanted to do was to make a movie without Michael Rooker in the future. I almost didn’t do Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3 because there was no Michael Rooker in it and I couldn’t see making the movie without him. He means that much to me and I love him that much.”

Gunn also revealed that he also came up with plans to have Yondu survive when he was writing the script, but he decided that this would not only be a cop-out, but it would betray what the sequel’s story is truly about – family.

“That was not what this story was. For me, the most important thing in making a movie is to tell the truest and most honest story possible, and that’s whether you’re making a $500,000 indie film or a $200 million dollar spectacle film. And the truth of this story, this was about a father’s true and ultimate love for his son. This is a movie about, Who really are our fathers? Who really are our siblings? And the only way for it to be an honest story was for Yondu to die, and anything else would have been half measures, and would have been me backing out because I was afraid to tell the truth. And so that’s why Yondu dies.”

Even with Yondu gone, that still doesn’t erase the possibility that we could see the character again through a flashback sequence or something like that, and it’s possible that the third film could fit that in somehow. However, it would be wise to not expect something as on-the-nose as Yondu outright coming back from the dead – as it stands, the Guardians franchise does not revolve around him.

Guardians of the Galaxy: Vol. 2 is playing in theaters right now. The film stars Chris Pratt as Peter Quill (Star-Lord), Zoe Saldana as Gamora, Dave Bautista as Drax, Vin Diesel as Groot, Bradley Cooper as Rocket, Michael Rooker as Yondu, Karen Gillan as Nebula, Sean Gunn as Kraglin, Pom Klementieff as Mantis, Elizabeth Debicki as Ayesha, and Kurt Russell as Ego. Guardians of the Galaxy: Vol. 3 does not yet have a release date, but it is expected to arrive sometime in 2020. Gunn, of course, will be writing and directing the movie. In the meantime, the Guardians will next be seen in Avengers: Infinity War and its sequel, both of which will be executive produced by Gunn.

Source: Entertainment Weekly