Before the Guardians of the Galaxy became household names in their own Marvel Studios franchise, the characters were nearly introduced to movie-goers in a series of short films. In an excerpt from The Story of Marvel Studios: The Making of the Marvel Cinematic Universe, Marvel Studios boss Kevin Feige recalls a time when the studio was ready to make four short films to get fans caught up on the respective characters — one with Rocket Raccoon and Groot, and one each for Gamora, Drax, and Star-Lord. After all, the outfit had just given each of the four primary Avengers their own solo film.
"We toyed with the idea of doing short films on Drax, on Rocket and Groot, and on Gamora, leading up to Guardians," Feige told the writers behind the tell-all book. The producer then recalled wanting to do a fourth short film about a kid that was fascinated by fantasy stories.
"Then you'd star Guardians. And half-way through, we would reveal that big space hero is the kid from the short. We thought that would be clever, but it was too much," he added.
In the same section of the book, it was revealed the Marvel Creative Committee — a group of creatives with Marvel Entertainment — also didn't take kindly to much of James Gunn's work on the franchise, including a big reveal in Vol. 2.
"The thinking was, when you tell your fan base that Kurt Russell and Chris Pratt are going to be playing father and son roles—two beloved actors from different generations who have hit action-comidies on their resumes—you're signaling that they're in for a great time," the book says.
It quickly adds, "Yet Russell was as sure of the twist as Marvel Studios, [James] Gunn, and Pratt were."
The Marvel Creative Committee found itself disbanded by 2017.
The first two Guardians of the Galaxy movies are now streaming on Disney+ while Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3 is due to hit theaters May 5, 2023. I Am Groot and the Guardians of the Galaxy Holiday Special have yet to receive release dates.
What members of the Guardians would you like to see spin-off shows of? Let us know your thoughts either in the comments section or by hitting our writer @AdamBarnhardt up on Twitter to chat all things MCU!