James Gunn Clarifies Star-Lord's Celestial Connection Amid Eternals Release

By Richard Nebens Updated:
Chris Pratt, Eternals

After weeks of promotional material and early reviews from critics, Marvel Studios finally brought Academy Award-winning director Chloé Zhao's Eternals to theaters across the world. Not only did this movie set the stage for powerful new heroes to take their place alongside the Avengers, but it also helped give more depth to past MCU movies in the Infinity Saga as well.

The most prominent aspect from MCU projects of yore was the Celestials, for whom Eternals gave a full backstory and explanation after past movies like Guardians of the Galaxy teased their existence in the cosmos. Their importance grew significantly in Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 after Kurt Russell's Ego the Living Planet revealed to his son Peter Quill that he was regarded as a Celestial in his own right.

Star-Lord's history has been a topic of conversation in numerous regards over the years, diverting into sub-topics such as his potential ties to Captain America and more. Most recently, director James Gunn took another look at Peter Quill's Celestial background and clarified some specifics about his recent experiences.

James Gunn on Star-Lord's Celestial Heritage

James Gunn, Star Lord

Guardians of the Galaxy director James Gunn recently took to Twitter to answer fan questions regarding Peter Quill's Celestial parentage after the Celestials appeared in Marvel Studios' Eternals.

@Attitudist hoped that Quill would have the opportunity to showcase his Celestial power, but Gunn quickly confirmed that "[Quill] gave all that up" after killing Ego in Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2.

Kurt Russell, Ego

@tabali_tigi asked if Star-Lord's mother could have restored that power before Gunn reiterated the fact that "his mother is Meredith Quill & she's deceased."

The same Twitter user continued by referencing the scene in Vol. 2 where Ego went inside Peter's mind and showed him Eternity. Gunn clarified this to be Peter seeing "eternal life" rather than the actual being Eternity from Marvel Comics.

"He was seeing eternal life, not Eternity the Marvel comics being. He turned that down to save earth & his fellow Guardians."

The conversation continued with @tabali_tigi making sure that Gunn knew who Eternity really was, to which Gunn made it perfectly clear that he's aware of Eternity and "(he knows) she's not Quill's mother."

No Eternity Ties to Star-Lord

In Marvel Comics, the being Eternity is something of an abstract entity that embodies all existence, specifically in the Earth-616 reality. It's also connected with the all-powerful being Infinity. Their power is only exceeded by that of the Living Tribunal, which was referenced in 2016's Doctor Strange.

The Eternity tease from Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 has been part of heated arguments regarding Peter Quill's lineage for more than four years, especially considering the way that both Marvel and Gunn like to plant seeds for future plot points. 

With Peter Quill's powers dissipating into nothing after killing his father, Gunn removed all doubt that this event made the Guardians leader fully human and mortal just as his mother Meredith was. It's still a mystery how much Quill's future MCU outings will touch on this subject, especially with Vol. 3 largely focusing on Gamora and Nebula, but the Celestial ties will almost certainly only be used for emotional impact going forward.

Both of Gunn's Guardians of the Galaxy movies are available to stream on Disney+, and Eternals is playing in theaters worldwide. Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3 will debut in theaters on May 5, 2023.

- About The Author: Richard Nebens
Richard Nebens joined The Direct in March 2020, now serving as the site's Senior Writer and also working as an assistant editor and content creator. He started his journalism career as a hobby in 2019 and is passionate about sharing news and stories from the entertainment industry, especially comic book movies, comedy, and sci-fi. Richard looks to expand his knowledge about movies and TV every day, and he is eager to stay locked into the latest releases and breaking news at every opportunity.