In just over a year, James Gunn will be back in the theatrical spotlight with Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3, the third and final movie in the trilogy he started back in 2014. As filming continues into 2022 for this threequel, the Guardians' third solo adventure is quickly becoming one of Phase 4's most expansive outings in terms of characters and story alike.
While the Guardians' future in the MCU is largely a mystery after this film, Vol. 3 is serving as the end of the story for various storylines featuring the galactic misfits from the last few years. Zoe Saldana has referenced the film serving as an end for the franchise while Dave Bautista hinted that Vol. 3 could be the end of Drax's story within the MCU as well.
Even with this movie completing the Guardians' solo trilogy, it would be somewhat of a shame if none of the film's stars reprised their roles in any future projects post-2023. However, in his most recent social media activity, Gunn teased that this may not be the case for everybody involved with the otherworldly team.
James Gunn on the Guardians' MCU Future
@dark_kill_death asked Gunn how the vibes are on the set for Vol. 3, to which Gunn replied that things are going great. At the end of his reply, Gunn mentioned that this will be "the last Guardians movie for most of [the cast and crew]," perhaps for some of the crew to return for a fourth movie that would bring in a new main cast:
"Honesty they’re great, I love this cast and crew, but there is also a lot of sadness and near-daily tears knowing this is the last Guardians movie for most of us."
Gunn previously said "never say never" when asked about his potential return to direct a Vol. 4.
After a fan pleaded with Gunn that Vol. 3 "doesn't HAVE to be the last" Guardians of the Galaxy movie with the current main cast, Gunn reiterated his previous sentiments that the franchise will not continue with the current actors, saying:
"It does with this cast."
Will There Be a Guardians 4?
James Gunn often speaks about the third Guardians solo movie effectively completing the team's story, especially after fans will have seen them in three other solo movies and their Disney+ holiday special before this film. However, even for all the work that Gunn has put in with this team, there's still a chance that they may continue to new solo stories if this Tweet has real meaning behind it.
Right now, the only franchises with talks or confirmations for a fourth solo movie are Thor (Thor: Love and Thunder) and eventually Tom Holland's Spider-Man. While a fourth Guardians movie likely wouldn't be confirmed until after Vol. 3 releases in theaters, Gunn has remained open to the possibility for the last few months.
As it stands, the Guardians still have at least two additional stories coming in Love and Thunder and their Holiday Special before they take on their next journey alongside Adam Warlock and possibly the High Evolutionary. But considering that Gunn said this would be the last Guardians outing for only "most of us," fans have their ears wide open for this subject.
Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3 is set to release in theaters on May 5, 2023.