Phase 4 of the MCU has officially kicked into high gear with the arrival of WandaVision, and fans are loving it. Marvel has their most jam-packed line up ever planned with the filming of a few of those projects in full swing.
Production on Thor: Love and Thunder is starting up in Australia, and over the past few weeks plenty of Marvel stars have been spotted in the Sydney area. Now yet another has confirmed his presence Down Under.
ROCKET RACCOON REPORTING FOR DUTY
Actor Sean Gunn recently posted an image of him pointing towards the famous Sydney Opera House on his Instagram page.
While Gunn may not be an immediately-recognizable face to some Marvel fans, as he has been the stand-in actor for Rocket Raccoon for all the character’s appearances in the MCU since the first Guardians of the Galaxy film. Actor Bradley Cooper’s voice is added in during post-production, as is the CGI version of Rocket seen in the finished movies, while Gunn plays as a stand-in for the other actors to play off of.
Prior to this confirmation from Gunn on his whereabouts, there have been several other sightings of Guardians actors in Australia during the month of January, including Karen Gillan, Dave Bautista, Chris Pratt, Pom Klementieff, and Vin Diesel. In addition, Thor actor Chris Hemsworth recently confirmed filming for the movie was about to begin, and Lady Sif actress Jaimie Alexander confirmed she would soon be in Sydney, possibly hinting at her character's return to the franchise.
BUT WHERE'S GAMORA?
The only actor who portrays a member of the team not yet seen (other than the aforementioned Bradley Cooper, who only provides the voice of Rocket) is Zoe Saldana. This isn’t particularly surprising considering the main MCU timeline’s version of Gamora died in Avengers: Infinity War and the version who traveled to said timeline in Avengers: Endgame disappeared after the final battle. Since Thor: Love and Thunder is said to take place prior to Guardians of the Galaxy vol. 3, it’s likely Gamora will still be absent from the team during the events of the film.
One thing that is notable, however, is the rumor that Love and Thunder director Taika Waititi will be filming scenes of the characters for the upcoming Guardians of the Galaxy: Cosmic Rewind roller-coaster at Walt Disney World’s EPCOT theme park. The footage featured in the existing Guardians Disney park ride - Mission: BREAKOUT! at Disney’s California Adventure - was shot by the director of the franchise’s films, James Gunn, so this arrangement is most likely in place to avoid the unnecessary hassle of organizing yet another shoot during the COVID-19 pandemic.
If it turns out Saldana does not end up going to Australia, it’s possible that Gamora won’t be part of the new attraction as well, despite the theme park lore being separate from the main MCU canon and featuring characters that have already died in the movies. It’s also possible that Waititi is only overseeing some filming for the ride, and footage featuring Saldana will be filmed somewhere else at a later date.
Thor: Love and Thunder is currently set for a 2022 release, and the Guardians will next be seen in The Guardians of the Galaxy Holiday Special, set to come out in time for the 2022 holiday season.