Groot is dead, but that much shouldn't be a major revelation to anyone who's seen Guardians of the Galaxy. Monday afternoon, James Gunn confirmed the adult version of the bipedal tree audiences first fell in love with nearly seven years ago won't return. The character was, after all, killed during the events of the first film's climax, and the version of the character now is technically someone else altogether.
The Guardians helmer confirmed the news in one of his legendary Q&A sessions with fans on Instagram, where he answered a variety of questions about film, life, and anything else. "Sadly that original Groot is no longer with us," Gunn shared. "So unless there is a prequel of some type, we won't see him again."
In the same Q&A, the filmmaker double-downed on the Vol. 3 production scheduled. According to Gunn, the third Guardians feature will begin filming principal photography later this year. Guardians star Dave Bautista was one of the first to mention the filming schedule earlier this year, in the same conversation he confirmed some of the film's plans have changed in the tumultuous time since Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 was released.
"I believe it's okay to say that we will go into production late next year," Bautista shared. "I saw a script early on when we were all on schedule and James Gunn was attached before everything went nutso. I believe because [Marvel's] whole calendar has changed [due to the pandemic shutdown and Guardians' production delays], that storylines have changed, and they won't intersect like originally planned. Obviously, we lost Chadwick [Boseman], so I don't know where that leaves Black Panther. I haven't seen a new script, is the short answer."
The first two Guardians of the Galaxy movies are now streaming on Disney+. Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3 has yet to set a release date.
What other characters do you think will make an entrance in Vol. 3? Let us know your thoughts either in the comments section or by hitting our writer @AdamBarnhardt up on Twitter to chat all things MCU!