Not much is official when it comes to Marvel Studios’ plans after Avengers: Endgame. Two things that are, though: Spider-Man: Far From Home, which is out in July, and a third Guardians of the Galaxy movie which, as you well know, has been a whole other headache.
Most fans assumed that if writer/director James Gunn hadn’t been fired by Disney before being rehired several months later, Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3 would have been in theatres May 2020, potentially acting as a grand kick-off to Phase Four of the Marvel Cinematic Universe. However, speaking to io9 at the Avengers: Endgame press junket this week, producer Kevin Feige would not confirm if that was exactly Marvel’s original plan.
“I won’t say specifically [when Guardians 3 was coming out] but I will say we’re delaying when the film would have originally been,” Feige said. “But thankfully [James Gunn] is back and he’s doing it and all is right with the world.”
Well, mostly. Before Gunn makes Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3, he’s going to make The Suicide Squad for rival superhero movie makers Warner Bros. That means it’ll be years before Vol. 3 hits theatres. So, since its place in the overall Phase Four plan had to be moved, one wonders if that changed anything in the film itself.
“I don’t think so,” Feige said. “I mean we were prepping a movie and then stopped prepping that movie when that happened. So that, obviously, naturally, delayed the film. In terms of storyline, the answer is ‘I don’t think so.’ Unless James comes back and says ‘Hey I learned this thing. I want to try this thing’ or adapts his script that he’s already written.”
That perhaps means Vol. 3 wasn’t written as a kickoff to Phase Four, but its own insular conclusion to the story of the Guardians. And that’s probably a good thing. Now, if only it wasn’t just Rocket and Nebula who were alive…
We’ll see who comes back, or if, when Avengers: Endgame hits theatres April 24.