According to the franchise's writer and director, James Gunn, getting to that point might require a bit of twisting of the Marvel Cinematic Universe canon. While recently speaking at a panel, Gunn revealed that his script treatment for Guardians of the Galaxy 3 is complete, but that one hiccup is currently standing in the way of getting that story onscreen.
"I did something in the first movie of Guardians where it was in the background but it was distinctly there, and people know that it’s there. And I’m like goddammit. Because I have a really good storytelling reason for breaking the canon, and I stayed up last night figuring out if I’m gonna do it or not. I still don’t know."
As Gunn explained, a plot point in Guardians 3 would directly counteract something shown onscreen in the first film - particularly in the information shown on the team's mugshots when they are captured by the Nova Corps.
"Those things are something that your average viewer doesn’t see at all. But there’s a lot of background I put into those things about who they’ve worked with, where they are from, what’s going on. And it’s one of those things that I’m thinking about changing."
So what exactly could Gunn be wanting to change? And what effect would it have on the larger MCU? Click through to the next slide to check out our theories.
Before the band of misfits officially teamed up, each member had racked up a significant amount of criminal offenses.
While they're only shown sporatically throughout the mughshot sequence, they're easy enough for viewers to notice - and point out, if something doesn't quite match up between Guardians and Guardians 3. But then again, the franchise hasn't been immune to creating plot holes, even ones that stretch into the larger MCU.
There is, also, the specificity of some of the crimes - particularly one of Peter Quill/Star-Lord's. Quill's rap sheet fell under controversy when the first film came out for containing one count of a "sex crime", which was described as an "illegal manipulation of [a] Gramosian duchess".
Gunn quickly explained that this was not a crime in the way our society understands it, and more of a violation of the Gramosian law that royalty can not be intimate with regular folk. But this listing - and the way it's referred to within the film's universe - could create an awkward situation should Guardians 3 need to visit Gramos in any way, which would explain Gunn's hesitancy to approach that storyline.
Another possibility is that something in Guardians 3 could require a change to one of the character's origins - or specifically, origin planets. With Peter's origins basically covered in Vol. 2, there's a chance that the genesis of one of the remaining team members could be covered in the third film.
Looking at the arrest records, Drax's origin planet and species isn't listed, so he wouldn't be the issue. Gamora's species - of which she is the last survivor - is listed as the Zehoberis, which the anglicized version of her comic home planet the Zen-Whoberis. Those similarities suggest that Gunn wouldn't need to modify her origin too terribly if he were to expand on it in Guardians 3.
The origins listed on Groot's rap sheet - which say that he was born on Planet X/Taluhnia - line up with his comic beginnings as well. And Rocket's home world - or at least the origin of his cybernetic enhancements - is listed as Halfworld in the Keystone Quadrant, a corner which has yet to be explored in the cosmic size of the Marvel Cinematic Universe.
So could Gunn need to change one of the Guardians' origin planets? At this point, it's too early to rule it out, or to pinpoint an exact reason for Gunn to need to make that change. But there still could be more about the Guardians' established MCU origins. Which brings us to...
Another segment of the Guardians' arrest records is the members' known associates. Only a few of the team members have names listed under that category - namely Peter, Groot, and Rocket.
Ruling out the first two's known associates (who already have been seen in previous Guardians films), we're left with one noteworthy name listed with Rocket - Lylla.
For the uninitiated, Lylla is a sentient otter who also hails from Rocket's origin planet of Halfworld. While Lylla has only had a handful of comic appearances, she formed a significant bond with Rocket, with the pair being considered as soulmates.
Given her ties to Rocket, it totally makes sense that Gunn threw her name into his rap sheet in the first Guardians, as an Easter egg to fans. But it does create a conundrum if Lylla were to appear in Guardians 3 - and if Gunn wanted Rocket to meet her for the first time during that film.
Of course, the initial Easter egg hinting at an established Rocket and Lylla dynamic could easily be explained away with a line of dialogue. It also could simply be disregarded, as none of the other members of the Guardians would have seen Rocket's arrest record from the first film.
But the presence of Lylla's name in Guardians 1 does create a pretty glaring possibility for what piece of canon Gunn would like to change, and it would certainly excite fans if she were to be included in the third installment.
More Guardians of the Galaxy
MORE GUARDIANS OF THE GALAXY: Awesome Mix Vol. 2 Getting Vinyl And Cassette Release / Beast Kingdom Shows Off Their Exclusive Star-Lord Figure / New Concept Art Reveals Alternate Ego Design / James Gunn Reveals His Growing Responsibility Within The MCU
Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 is written and directed by James Gunn (Slither). The film marks the return of the original Guardians, including Chris Pratt (Jurassic World) as Peter Quill/Star-Lord; Zoe Saldana (Star Trek Into Darkness) as Gamora; Dave Bautista (Spectre) as Drax; Vin Diesel (Furious 7) as the voice of Groot; Bradley Cooper (American Sniper) as the voice of Rocket; Michael Rooker (Jumper) as Yondu; Karen Gillan (The Big Short) as Nebula; and Sean Gunn (Gilmore Girls) as Kraglin. New cast members include Pom Klementieff (Oldboy), Elizabeth Debicki (The Great Gatsby, Everest), Chris Sullivan (The Knick, The Drop) and Kurt Russell (The Hateful Eight, The Thing).
Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 is in theaters now. Spider-Man: Homecoming lands on July 7, 2017, followed by Thor: Ragnarok on November 3, 2017. After that Black Panther debuts on February 16, 2018, while Avengers: Infinity War hits theaters on May 4, 2018. Ant-Man and the Wasp