Marvel's Creative Committee Didn't Like James Gunn's Guardians of the Galaxy Vision – CBR – Comic Book Resources

Many of James Gunn’s ideas for Guardians of the Galaxy, like the music and characters, were met with concern from Marvel’s creative committee.
More than seven years since its release, Guardians of the Galaxy remains one of Marvel Studio’s most beloved and marketable franchises. Yet the features that left such a big impact on audiences weren’t fully understood by the studio’s Creative Committee during production.
In the new book The Story of Marvel Studios: The Making of the Marvel Cinematic UniverseGuardians producer Jeremy Latcham went into detail about the New York Creative Committee’s skepticism towards stylistic choices director James Gunn added to the Marvel IP. “They did not understand the music. They didn’t understand the tone,” Latcham said. “We really fought for the movie, and to keep James’ vision intact. We knew we were on to something special. We just kept pushing forward.”
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While the Creative Committee had their doubts, president Kevin Feige felt that Gunn’s ideas provided the right kind of creative risks that Marvel Studios should take at that point in time. “It was more important to take the swing. It felt like it was appropriate timing, if not a hair overdue, to make a swing like that,” he explained. “It didn’t have to be a grand slam. We were trying something new based on characters that are even less known than any of the characters leading up to The Avengers were.”
In addition to concerns over Gunn’s ’70s and ’80s-themed musical choices, the director also cast a number of unorthodox actors to play the Guardians, including Parks and Recreation‘s Chris Pratt as Star-Lord and former WWE pro wrestler Dave Bautista as Drax the Destroyer. However, Guardians of the Galaxy not only received overwhelmingly positive reviews upon its 2014 release but also made back its $232.3 million budget more than three times over, grossing $773.3 million in total sales. The film’s success also increased the Guardian’s popularity, leading to a 2017 sequel, appearances in Avengers: Infinity War and Avengers: Endgame and two video games made by Telltale and Eidos-Montréal respectively, the latter recently coming out in October.
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Though Disney briefly fired Gunn in 2018 over a series of controversial past tweets, he was rehired again in 2019 to write and direct the third Guardians film. In that time, Gunn directed DC’s critically acclaimed The Suicide Squad, whose post-credit scene laid the groundwork for his upcoming HBO Max spinoff series, Peacemaker, starring John Cena. Gunn confirmed that Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3 will be his last Guardians film, but he’s also writing and directing Disney+’s The Guardians of the Galaxy Holiday Special, which will debut in 2022 before Vol. 3‘s release. The Guardians, meanwhile, will appear in supporting roles for Taika Waititi’s Thor: Love and Thunder.
Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3 is set to hit theaters on May 5, 2023.
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Source: The Story of Marvel Studios: The Making of the Marvel Cinematic Universe
Ben Wasserman is a graduate of NYU’s M.A. Cinema Studies Program at the Tisch School of the Arts. He’s previously written for the pop culture websites ComicsVerse and mxdwn Movies and currently writes movie reviews for Film-Forward alongside CBR. Ben loves all things film, television, gaming and comic-related, especially when it comes to Marvel. You can reach out to Ben on his Twitter page: