Marvel’s newest franchise, Guardians of the Galaxy, hasn’t even had a chance to prove its mettle at the box office yet, but the comic book empire has already announced a sequel is in the works for a planned release in summer 2017. The announcement was made during Marvel’s highly anticipated panel at Comic-Con over the weekend, per Deadline, when director James Gunn and star Chris Pratt spoke about the film via a video feed from London, where they are busy promoting the movie.
While there is a sequel being planned, the actual performance of the first movie will determine whether Gunn writes and directs the second film as well. “Of course they would want to make a sequel as long as [Guardians] does well and people are excited about it, they’ll wanna do a sequel. So it’s going to happen,” Guardians co-writer Nicole Perlman told The Wrap. “James will be directing Guardians 2, so he would also be writing Guardians 2.”
Gunn has already elaborated a bit on what plot points he’d like to explore in the Guardians sequel. Speaking to Film Divider, Gunn said of the second film: “I know a lot of where I want to go. I have a lot of ideas for stories and characters that are going to appear, and there are documents written up, that some people have, about Peter Quill’s father and his relationship, a lot of stuff about Yondu and a lot of stuff about Drax that nobody knows. There are a lot of things that are part of the overall schematic that already exist, not to mention a lot of stuff about all of the cultures. There’s a lot of stuff about Xandarian and Kree culture that I’ve written down or I have in my head, as well as Krylorians and Ravagers.”
Guardians is getting rave reviews from the critics that have seen advance screenings, with a 97 percent fresh rating on Rotten Tomatoes. Critics have been impressed by the film’s zany humor, which was hinted at in the trailers and is a departure from the more serious tone that some of Marvel’s more recent efforts have taken. The film’s spacey visuals and Chris Pratt’s take on the funny guy-action hero Quill were also praised.
“Overall, the writers have crafted a well-articulated universe with distinct settings and relatable, compelling characters devoted to a thrilling quest for redemption. Perhaps more significantly, the generous use of situational and physical humor defuses any highbrow sci-fi pretensions that might discourage the genre-averse,” reads a review from The Hollywood Reporter.
With little competition and the typical excitement generated by any Marvel effort, Guardians will likely outperform the other films opening the weekend, but that doesn’t guarantee it will be a smash hit. The box office has had a difficult summer this year, with even the films that have opened in the top spot making a significant percentage less than the films that opened in the same weekend last year. With projections guessing that the movie will earn around $60 million in its opening weekend, it’s looking like Guardians will be one of the top earners in a lackluster summer, which is enough to justify that sequel.
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