How James Gunn Pitched Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 Differently Than First Movie

By Pierre Chanliau Updated:
Guardians of the Galaxy posters with an arrow pointing right

James Gunn will finally begin production on Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3 after he has finished with his Peacemaker series for HBO Max. At first, the movie was thought to have Christmas themes attached to it, due to the working title of “Hot Christmas,” but that might be literal as it was announced at Disney's Investor Day presentation that Gunn would also direct a special for the streaming service.

According to Kevin Feige, this special will be called, of course, The Guardians of the Galaxy Holiday Special, which according to James Gunn, might be inspired by the terrible Star Wars Holiday Special. It's a wonder how James Gunn's pitch to Feige and the rest of Marvel Studios went, especially since this special will lead directly into Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3, so that movie could be a literal Christmas movie.

When discussing pitches on his Twitter account, James Gunn actually explained how he pitched the very first Guardians of the Galaxy to Marvel Studios and its sequel.


What first began as a discussion with James Gunn about what movies not to mention during a pitch in mainstream Hollywood, one fan finally asked the logical question: “What movies DID you reference while pitching Guardians?” which Gunn graciously replied with a step by step answer:

Gunn even mentioned British artist Chris Foss in his pitch, who eventually worked with Gunn on the film.

Gunn also couldn't help but mention the galaxy far, far away, but not for the reason some may think.

Gunn elaborated on the Star Wars comparison, drawing similarities between Rocket and Groot with C-3PO and Chewbacca.

Gunn reiterated that, much like Star Wars, he wanted Guardians of the Galaxy to be "its own thing."

Another fan thought to ask Gunn what his pitch was for Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2, which apparently involved far less convincing:



It's funny how this interesting discussion began with James Gunn pleading to those pitching movies in Hollywood to never reference a movie “that isn't a massive hit.” He even used a movie he loves, The Thing, as an example of a great movie, but one that totally bombed at the box office when it came out and recommended to instead use another, a popular movie with a similar premise and tone, like Jaws.

What's interesting about James Gunn's pitch for Guardians of the Galaxy is that he mentions these massive hit movies, while exemplifying how different it would be from them. This includes referring to Aliens and Blade Runner as “darker science fiction,” as Gunn wanted Guardians of the Galaxy to be “a colorful reaction.” It's also pretty telling how much Marvel Studios trusts its directors (or at least James Gunn) after already directing a hit movie for them.

- About The Author: Pierre Chanliau
Pierre Chanliau began as a news & feature writer for The Direct at the site's launch in 2020. As a longtime reader of superhero comic books, Pierre's knowledge of Marvel and DC is extensive, informing his reporting and editorial pieces regarding the MCU and DCU.