While it was no surprise when Marvel Studios announced that Guardians of the Galaxy was their 2014 mystery movie, online reaction to the announcement has been mixed. It seems like many might have been holding out hope that the mystery movie might turn out to be something different.
In the past, Marvel Studios has been fairly conservative with their movie franchises only choosing to develop their best known properties, whom have some name recognition among the general public. With the Guardians of the Galaxy, Marvel Studios has chosen a property that isn’t that well known even among comic book fans. Most of the fans who disagree with the announcement are frustrated that Marvel Studios didn’t choose one of their better known properties.
Luke Cage, Dr. Strange, Prince Namor the Sub-Mariner, and Black Panther are all characters, who have significantly more name recognition that the Guardians of the Galaxy. With false rumors touting that Black Panther would be the next movie announced by Marvel Studios, some fans are upset that Marvel Studios hasn’t moved forward with developing one of their black superheroes into a movie franchise.
At first glance, Marvel Studios selection of Guardians of the Galaxy seems like a huge gamble. The Guardians of the Galaxy team includes both a raccoon and a walking tree, whom on the surface would seem difficult to realistically adapt into a live action movie. In fact, some confused news sites originally reported that Guardians of the Galaxy would be an animated movie. Of course, we can’t really blame them for being confused, because when you see a gun-toting raccoon it screams animation.
The other thing that has some fans apprehensive about Marvel Studios announcement is that no director, actors, or production budget has been announced for the film. To pull off the Guardians of the Galaxy correctly, it would likely require a very large budget. Will Disney be willing to allow Marvel Studios to sink $150 million plus into a space adventure movie when they are still reeling from John Carter?
Even the August 1, 2014 release date is puzzling, because it doesn’t give the movie long in the theaters before kids go back to school. If Marvel Studios does plan to invest the capital it would take to do a Guardians of the Galaxy movie right, it would seem to make sense to go with a release date a little earlier in the summer.
Of course, those are the negatives. There are also a lot of positives with the Guardians of the Galaxy. While the characters do not have a huge fan base as of now, the people who are fans are very excited. Their selection shows that Marvel is willing to take risks and invest in lesser known properties.
In fact if Marvel does pull the movie off, they have not only launched a new successful movie franchise, but they will have reinvigorated these characters in the comics world as well. The merchandising could also be very lucrative. Instead of having just one character to make action figures of and feature on backpacks, Marvel will have a whole team of characters to feature. They will in essence have created a second Avengers-like property.
Still, if the movie flops, it could hold bad tidings for future Marvel projects. A failed Guardians of the Galaxy could mean Marvel Studios has to stick with only the best known characters. In that scenario, we would likely see a Captain America 8, before ever seeing the first Luke Cage movie. Only time will tell if Marvel Studios decision to move forward with the Guardians of the Galaxy is a stroke of genius that will results in the next big franchise or will be remembered as the day that Marvel Studios jumped the shark. What do you think? Genius or a big mistake?