In their much-anticipated return, Marvel's Guardians of the Galaxy will once again be at the center of a new movie a whopping six years after their last major outing. Can you believe it’s been that long?! A lot has happened since then, especially in the aftermath of the events of INFINITY WAR and ENDGAME.
Gamora died at the hand of Thanos, but a younger version of Gamora is somewhere out in the universe. There are relatively new Guardians to follow up with since the team last toplined a movie: Mantis (Pom Klementieff) and Nebula (Karen Gillan) have their own storylines. And the backstory of one big character is yet to be explored: Rocket Raccoon. So what’s next for Marvel’s ragtag team of anti-heroes? Here’s everything we know so far about GUARDIANS OF THE GALAXY VOL. 3.
When Does Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3 Come Out?
GUARDIANS OF THE GALAXY VOL. 3 will open exclusively in movie theatres on May 5.
Watch The New Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3 Trailer
The first GUARDIANS OF THE GALAXY VOL. 3 trailer was funny and, unsurprisingly, good at provoking big reactions. The Guardians movies have long been some of Marvel's most openly emotional stories, and Gunn seems to be ready to close his series on a powerful note.
The new trailer, embedded above, gives us more of a story outline, which we'll go into in more detail below. But first…
What Are the Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3 Trailer Songs
The song in the first GUARDIANS VOL. 3 trailer is "In the Meantime" by Spacehog. If you were listening to rock radio in the mid-'90s, this tune was inescapable. It's also a great fit for this trailer. We don't know if this song will be in the movie, however.
The second trailer features a heavily reworked or remixed version of "Since You Been Gone," by Rainbow.
What is the Plot of Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3?
Even as the movie's release approaches, we don't know too much about the story of VOL. 3. The "Guardians Of The Galaxy Holiday Special", which arrived on DIsney+ in December, sets up a few things. The Guardians have purchased Knowhere from the Collector, and are working to make it over as a safe haven for alien refugees. But an event spurs a new mission that could be the Guardians' last.
We learn how the High Evolutionary (Chukwudi Iwuji) was behind Rocket's creation. Some element of that backstory sets Star-Lord and the rest of the Guardians on a new journey. They encounter Gamora, which leads to some awkward moments. And Adam Warlock, the golden being created at the end of the last Guardians movie, is flying around on a mission to destroy the team.
In fact, this will be the last mission for this particular Guardians team. James Gunn said in January 2022 that VOL. 3 will be "the last time people will see this team of Guardians… This is the end for us."
Rocket Raccoon's Backstory
As the trailer suggests, one of the big focus points of VOL. 3 will be Rocket Raccoon. Writer/director James Gunn recently told EW, "one of the reasons why I came back to [make] this movie was because I felt like I needed to tell Rocket's story… To me, Rocket has always been the secret protagonist of the Guardians movies. From the beginning, it has been rooted in who he is as a character. I think he exemplifies a lot of the traits of all the Guardians. They've had all these traumas, and it brings them together. I just think that his is more extreme than others."
So this movie will show how the High Evolutionary transformed Rocket "from an ordinary raccoon to a genetically-engineered killing machine." Bring tissues.
The Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3 Cast
The main GotG cast returns for VOL 3, but just as Gunn will be moving on after this movie, so will some cast members. Dave Bautista announced that VOL. 3 will be his final bow as Drax the Destroyer. It will likely also be the last time in green for Zoe Saldaña. For VOL 3 at least, they'll appear alongside Chris Pratt’s wise-cracking ringleader Peter Quill, Sean Gunn as Kraglin, Karen Gillan as Nebula, and Pom Klementieff as Mantis. Vin Diesel returns to voice Groot, and Bradley Cooper returns as the voice of Rocket Raccoon.
But wait, there’s more! Sylvester Stallone returns as Stakar Ogord in a more prominent role than his previous cameo in VOL. 2, and Elizabeth Debicki will be back as Ayesha, the golden High Priestess who created Adam Warlock. They are joined by Nico Santos ("Superstore"), BORAT SUBSEQUENT MOVIEFILM breakout Maria Bakalova, Chukwudi Iwuji from Gunn’s "Peacemaker," and Daniela Melchior from THE SUICIDE SQUAD.
Will Poulter plays Adam Warlock, the powerful being whose existence was set up in a post-credits scene during VOL. 2. Ayesha creates Warlock to enact revenge against the Guardians. We couldn’t be more excited to see Poulter in this role and what might be in store for the character of Adam Warlock!
How About the Guardians 3 Soundtrack?
We hate to burst your bubble but, as of this point, we have no concrete details about the GUARDIANS VOL. 3 soundtrack or the songs therein. With the previous two movies, James Gunn's handpicked playlists were a big part of the fan appeal, and we expect that will be the situation here as well.
The only thing we do know is that rumors of modern tunes being included were off-base. Gunn himself has said that the songs in GUARDIANS 3 come from "the Zune." More specifically, as he recently told Billboard, the songs all "come from the brown Zune that Yondu gave to Peter Quill. They aren’t chosen by his mother, I can tell you that." So the playlist won't have modern songs, but it might sound different from the last two soundtracks.
The Creative Team Behind Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3
James Gunn, the director of VOLS. 1 and 2, reunited with the MCU after his initial firing a few years ago. So VOL. 3 is set to be in good hands. Once again, he's directing from his own script.
The film will be co-edited by Gunn’s regular collaborator Fred Raskin, with Craig Wood. Another previous Gunn collaborator, John Murphy, who did the score for THE SUICIDE SQUAD (and has also scored KICK-ASS, MIAMI VICE, and LOCK, STOCK, AND TWO SMOKING BARRELS) will be composing the score for VOL. 3.
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All images courtesy of Marvel Studios.