Morning Watch - Guardians of the Galaxy 2 VFX Reel

(The Morning Watch is a recurring feature that highlights a handful of noteworthy videos from around the web. They could be video essays, fanmade productions, featurettes, short films, hilarious sketches, or just anything that has to do with our favorite movies and TV shows.)

In this edition, the best sketch from the season premiere of Saturday Night Live features Ryan Gosling haunted by James Cameron‘s apparent lazy use of a certain default word processor font for the Avatar logo. Plus, a Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 visual effects reel won’t let us unsee how creepy Rocket Raccoon looks without fur (or even skin), and we find out how many times Viggo Mortensen almost died on the set of The Lord of the Rings trilogy.

First up, in case you didn’t see our review of Saturday Night Live over the weekend, this was undoubtedly the best sketch of the night. This sketch feels like it was tailor made for that special cross-section of nerds who are both obsessed with movies and typography. Ryan Gosling’s dedication to the real drama of this pre-recorded sketch is what makes it a home run, and the premise itself is so good that you can’t believe that it’s real.

Next up, a “Show and Tell Reel” from the visual effects company Framestore shows us all of the incredible details that went into creating the digital effects of Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2. From the adorable dancing Baby Groot to the incredible skinless and hairless Rocket Raccoon, there are some unbelievable details on display here, right down to the individual hairs on Rocket’s body.

Finally, did you know that Viggo Mortensen injured himself and nearly died a couple times during the production of The Lord of the Rings? The actor broke a couple toes, almost got hit in the face with a real knife, and nearly drowned, all in the name of Middle-earth. Watch the video to find out how these accidents happened during production and even ended up in the movie.

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