Marvel Studios is currently as busy as ever working to get a brand new slate of projects out to fans - Phase 4 of the Marvel Cinematic Universe will begin on Disney+ with WandaVision in January 2021 and in theaters with Black Widow on May 7. This will kick off a stream of eight new movies and eight new Disney+ series confirmed to arrive over the next two years, although the expansive franchise has already announced other projects that are in the earliest stages of development.
Marvel has already announced plans for a reboot of Blade along with third entries for both the Ant-Man and Guardians of the Galaxy franchises. While Blade is still quite far out in plans for the MCU, the untitled Ant-Man 3 will begin filming sometime in 2021, as will Guardians of the Galaxy, Vol. 3 thanks to regular updates from director James Gunn.
News has also just arrived on that seemingly confirms the working title for Gunn's next Marvel adventure will be, which opens up a whole new realm of questions that need answers...
Skyler Shuler, the editor-in-chief of The DisInsider, has revealed via his Twitter account that Marvel Studios is still using the working title "Hot Christmas" for the MCU's Guardians of the Galaxy, Vol. 3. This is the same working title that has been planned since as early as October of 2018, a time when Gunn had been publicly removed as a director of the project.
Shuler's full tweet can be seen below:
WHAT THIS MEANS
The fact that the working title for this project hasn't changed in over two years that indicates that the film's overall production likely hasn't gone through any major changes during Gunn's furlough. Even through the entire saga of James Gunn's departure and rehire onto this project, Marvel Studios seems to have had this next story pretty set in stone no matter who led the way, even though Gunn has so been instrumental in building the franchise as a whole.
The "Hot Christmas" working could give some indication as to what the plot of Guardians 3 could be given the MCU's history with working titles. The studio has used titles like "Group Hug' for The Avengers in 2012, along with "Freezer Burn" and "Frostbite" for the first two entires in the Captain America trilogy, leading fans to ponder what exactly can be inferred from "Hot Christmas."
Rocket Raccoon's backstory has been heavily teased to be a major plot point in this movie, although the Christmas inclusion could also tease a Christmas miracle-type event occurring (like the addition of Drax's daughter, Moondragon). The name could also signal the imminent arrival of Adam Warlock after teases in the first two Guardians of the Galaxy movies, with Warlock sometimes being referred to as a Christ-like figure in the comics. \
Guardians of the Galaxy, Vol. 3 is reported to begin shooting in late 2021, and there is no set release date for the movie.