Marvel’s Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3 – Cast & Filmmaker Interview
Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3 brings James Gunn’s trilogy to an end. These films follow a ragtag group of mercenaries as they explore the galaxy, and save it a few times. In Vol. 3, they must race against to clock to help one of their own, but the more they learn about Rocket’s past, the more heartbreaking it gets.
During the global press conference, the Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3 returning cast and filmmakers discuss everything coming to an end, while the newcomers talk about joining the franchise.
- Chris Pratt (“Peter Quill / Star-Lord”)
- Karen Gillan (“Nebula”)
- Pom Klementieff (“Mantis”)
- Will Poulter (“Adam Warlock”)
- Chukwudi Iwuji (“The High Evolutionary”)
- Sean Gunn (“Kraglin”)
- Maria Bakalova (“Cosmo”)
- James Gunn (Director)
- Kevin Feige (Producer)
Moderator: Nathan Fillion
James, Could You Have Dreamed Of How This Would Turn Out?
I mean, I could’ve dreamed it. I’m not gonna lie. I had hopes. I felt really good about it from the beginning. I felt like we were doing something different. I felt like the world needed a space fantasy that was different from ones we had seen before. So, I was very pleasantly surprise when my greatest hopes did come true. But I think in terms of the story that we were telling over the three movies, I did have a sense of how it was gonna go from the beginning.
Guardians of the Galaxy has changed me in so many ways. Everything I’ve learned from Kevin and Lou. Also, in terms of this family of people, I’ve been really good at hiring non-jerks. My main memories are not going to the premieres or going on these press junkets. It’s being on set and having the little moments. It’s doing bits with Chris in between sets. It’s talking to Sean. Watching Chuk turn in an amazing performance. Goofing around with Pom, wondering what the hell she’s talking about.
But I’m gonna miss the characters. That’s the saddest part for me, is I really, truly love these characters. I love all of them. I think there’s certain ones that I have a special fondness for, especially Rocket. The saddest part of all of this? I’m gonna see all these people again. They’re all friends of mine. But I’m not gonna see the characters. I’m not gonna be writing the characters again, at least not in the near future. And so, that’s a real sadness.
Chris, What Is Peter Quill’s Mindset In Vol. 3?
He’s lost. He’s definitely lost. There’s a wonderful monologue that Bautista gives that comes from Mantis that Quill is a guy who needs to learn how to swim. He’s been hopping from lily pad to lily pad, woman to woman, and relationship to relationship. I think that’s a pretty human condition. Oftentimes we find ourselves in our relationships or in the affiliations we have with a team or a family or whatever. And he has been lost.
In the beginning, he was running away from the death of his mother, but he got to pretend to be this character based on these pop culture icons of his childhood of the late-’80s. And so, he was dancing around, but all of that was really, he had found himself there. But it was kinda B.S., you know? And then he found himself with the Guardians of the Galaxy. And then he thought he could find himself with who his father was.
So, he’s a guy who’s constantly been searching for who he is. And then he found it again in his relationship with Gamora. And so, when that’s stripped away from him, he’s a guy who’s realizing that all of these various people that he’s found that are Quill, none of them have been the real him. And so he’s lost.
Karen, What Has Changed For You Since The Beginning?
What’s changed for me? Definitely my understanding of what it’s like to be a scapegoat sibling. I’m an only child.
Because Nebula was definitely that. She was never the golden child. And so, I never understood that because I’m an only child. And so, that was a really interesting exploration for me. So, now I just have so much respect for people that have gone through that.
Maria, What Was It Like Playing Cosmo the Spacedog?
When I was auditioning for the part, I was like, “How can I play this?” And it was so interesting, because you can dare to be a little bit more over the top, ’cause she’s a puppy and she has more energy. When I got the call from my team that I’m getting the job, I was like, absolutely mind-blown and I didn’t know what to do and to expect. And I think I started jumping.
And then, when I found out that I can be on set, actually, and work with a mo-cap suit, and imagine that I’m a child again and use my imagination to be like, “Okay, today I’m going to be a dog. Tomorrow I will be a flower. The next day, I’m going to be a butterfly.” It’s interesting, we tend to forget about imagination when we grow up. And it’s been just incredible.
Will, What Was It Like Being The New Guy On Set?
Oh, my gosh. I couldn’t have been made to feel more welcome by everybody. Honestly, I was nervous from the outside looking in. I think because I was a really big fan of the Guardians movies. And within the Marvel universe, this was the trilogy, as it now is, of films that I was the biggest admirer of. And so, you look at something as a fan, and you think, that’s cool, to be able to appreciate that as a fan for what it is. And that’s what it will always be. You don’t imagine yourself being a part of it. So, that in itself was exciting. And then to have an experience characterized by all of these lovely people making me feel so welcome.
And something that I thought was gonna be really scary actually just being really good fun, you know? James makes a point of making set a really fun environment and then surrounds himself with really great people. So, across every department, not just the acting department, but every department, there are wonderful people, and it just made the experience so, so fun. Which is really, like, really important. ‘Cause there’s pressure, and as a new kid, I was pretty scared, so that made it easy.
Sean, What Has Kraglin’s Journey Been Like For You?
I think that, just like all the Guardians, that Kraglin had to kind of figure out what his place in the family was. And one thing that really impresses me about the movies is how I do feel like, in a way, that the journey of the cast has mirrored the journey of the characters, in a way.
Like, for me, being there in the first movie and feeling like, oh, I’m the director’s brother, and I’m here, and I’m kind of on the outside. And Kraglin is just on the peripheral, and he comes in and says his things here and there. And then learning that, over the course of the movies, that I felt as much at home with all these people, that I felt fully accepted and, like a full member of the cast and of the group.
And that’s what happens with Kraglin over the course of the movies. And so, that’s really special and really cool for me. Kraglin was with Yondu and Quill from the beginning. And was sort of like, why am I on the outside? And his journey to learn why he belongs is my favorite thing about him.
Pom, What Has Playing Mantis Meant To You?
I love playing this character, and I’m so grateful for James to have given me this opportunity. And to get to play with all these incredible actors. And I think each character, they complete each other, too, you know? And I remember James telling me that Mantis was like the glue that kept the Guardians together in some ways, you know?
I think it’s beautiful, and I think the world lacks a lot of empathy, you know? So it’s a beautiful message, too.
Chukwudi, How Did You Get In The Mindset Of Such An Evil Villain?
It was very dark. Because between James telling me he wanted me to play the role and doing the screen test, I had a lot of downtime. You were filming an episode that I wasn’t in in Peacemaker. So, I was in Vancouver at the time. And the first thing that’s written when you meet him is him listening to Space Opera. So, immediately I knew classical music was gonna be a big part of this character. Because I didn’t know where I was gonna go with him. I thought I would just listen to a lot of my favorite arias and classical, and sent them to James, and actually, one or two of them made it onto the film.
So, a lot of finding this guy, for me, was saying, there’s something. If he’s listening to opera and he’s in space opera, and he’s this mad scientist sort of person, I just thought of someone that doesn’t sleep. That’s someone that’s obsessed with it, listening to this music. He needs the music as he wanders through his castle at night. And I thought very deeply about Henry IV. He has a great speech about, “Heavy is the head that wears the crown. How many thousands of my poorest subjects that at this moment, are asleep.” And I sent that to James.
So, it wasn’t really about specifically how do I play the character written. It’s like, how do I bring this guy into the room. Because I knew that would be taken care of in the script, the motivations and the moments and stuff are impeccably written. So, it was about, who is this guy before he turns up on the set, you know?
Kevin, What Makes The Guardians of the Galaxy Trilogy Different From Other MCU Trilogies?
You know, we’ve had trilogies before. We’ve had a number of them, actually. And I was thinking, why does this feel so different and so much of a passage of some sort? And it’s because Guardians really was the first movie that was completely outside of the realm. It tied in with Thanos and Infinity Stones. But The Avengers were not in it. And we weren’t setting up Tony Stark’s next adventure, or Captain America.
It was really our attempt of saying, we don’t wanna just do superhero movies. We don’t want to just do Iron Man movies or Avengers movies. And we wanted to do, as James said earlier, a big space movie. And it worked in a crazy way. It worked entirely because of James Gunn. So, it just feels like this trilogy, and James writing and directing all three of them, it represents something unique within the pantheon of the MCU, that I’m very proud of.
Watch the cast in action, one last time, when Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3 comes to theaters on May 5th.