Interview: James Gunn Talks 'Guardians Of The Galaxy' Blu-Ray And Franchise Future

One of the biggest and most surprising films of the year, Guardians of the Galaxy, comes out on Blu-ray on Tuesday. It's a fun occasion for Marvel fans because the studio's Blu-rays are always so much fun. We covered some of what makes this release so cool in the past, but we also talked to James Gunn about it.

Gunn is the co-writer and director of the film and, on the occasion of the Blu-ray release, we got to talk to him about the surprising success of the film. We also chatted about some of his regrets, common misinterpretations of parts of the movie, the marketing and his next film, 2017's Guardians of the Galaxy 2.

We've previously pulled a few of these quotes, but, below, read our full James Gunn Guardians of the Galaxy interview.guardians of the galaxy ending

/Film: What was the biggest surprise for you in terms of the film's reception and reaction?  And I don't mean box office. Was it the fact that like dancing Groot became a big thing, was it the soundtrack, was it how people embraced Rocket and Groot?James Gunn: I think it was an overall [thing]. So I made the movie Super and a lot of mainstream audience didn't get Super, didn't like Super. But the people that did like Super f***ing loved it. And they were nuts about it. It was very intense sort of passion for that film. I went out to make Guardians, which is a much bigger movie. I knew I was pleasing more people. And I thought people would like it. But what I didn't expect was for that many people to like it and that the passion of the core audience and beyond is still there. That people still, you know, they really love it. And that is really, that's a really cool thing.Karen Gillian in guardians of the galaxyYou mentioned in the press conference that a couple key characters were cut out of the montage at the end of the movie. Can you talk more about that?

Sure. There are three characters that got cut out [of the "Ain't No Mountain High Enough" montage]: Nebula, the Collector and Grandpa Quill. Nebula and Collector we decided, at a certain point, they're kind of bad guys in the first movie. It was a real joyous experience with that finale so we thought we'd keep it to the characters that were part of "the good team." Which includes Yondu. He did fight on the good guys side. So we thought we would keep it to them.

Grandpa Quill we cut because he was in old age make up and we were a little afraid people wouldn't recognize that it was him from the beginning of the movie. And also, it was a pretty sad moment. It was Grandpa Quill and he has this photograph of Meredith and Peter as a little boy and he looks up at the stars and we go up to the stars and it was really sweet. It means that he must have seen Quill getting abducted at the end of that day and is still waiting for him to return but it was freaking sad so we took it out.

Nebula's was actually my favorite. Nebula's I really liked a lot because she's lost her arm and she's just pissed off and she's just walking through this field all pissed off with a busted Ravager vehicle behind her. And she's just pissed off and I loved it.

drax guardians of the galaxyI've seen the movie a bunch of times and one teaser line I always focus on is when Quill says to Drax, "You should visit my planet sometime." Is that in there as a tease they will eventually get to Earth? Or is it just there as like a fun line?

It was there as a fun line and it's actually my only regret is cutting a line from that scene.  The original scene is what's in there now. So he says, "I come from a planet of outlaws, Billy the Kid, John Stamos" and Drax says, "Sounds like a place which I would like to visit." And Peter says, "You should." And then Drax says, "And kill many people there." And, I don't know, somebody thought it was too mean. Like Drax was too murderous or something. But at the end of the day, I think I really wish the line was still in there. That's my own true regret.

Now it feels like 'Oh my God, they're going to Earth, Avengers 3' you know?

I don't think that's necessarily the case. People seem to have a lot of ideas about what they think is going to happen and not know.

Guardians of the Galaxy middle fingerNow that people have the Blu-ray, is there anything else people should concentrate on, to learn more about the world and what might be coming?

What's going on with Rocket. Rocket's sort of interesting. You know, I'll say, people, read those f***ing mugshots. They tell you a lot about the characters and where are they from and what they are, what they do. I mean, we spent time figuring out what those mugshots say on the little thing. But I don't know if there's any special part. At the end of the day, there are teases about what's to come, but the movie's still mostly about the movie itself. And that'll continue to be the case.

Guardians of the Galaxy Pink ladyIn the special features, you mention how much research went into all these things that just are sort of background in the movie. In particular, the Pink people and what Peter sees in his map at the beginning of the movie. Are those things that might get expanded eventually? Are you gonna use that research?

Maybe. I mean yeah, for sure, You're talking about the Krylorians?


What their cultures are like and the Ravager culture and what's that like. And all that stuff. Yeah, I'd like to expand on many of those things.

Guardians of the Galaxy animated tv seriesDisney is doing a Guardians of the Galaxy cartoon.James Gunn: Yeah.That hypothetically takes place between this movie and your next movie.

Really? Is that what somebody said?


Because that's not true.


There's no way.

That was my question. Is that case or do you have to like be don't touch any of this?

No, that's totally separate from this Marvel Cinematic Universe. And whoever said that, it pisses me off.

Avengers: Age of Ultron: The HulkWhen I interviewed you last time, the rumor was about a Planet Hulk movie. And we know there's not gonna be a Planet Hulk movie 'cause now we know what's happening through 2020. However, there are a lot of rumors of what Hulk's gonna be, because there isn't a Hulk movie.


What would you say as a tease to fans of what Hulk's role will be? 

I don't really know. I mean, it's like for me, I'm mostly concerned with Marvel Cosmic. Which is separate, you know.

Guardians of the Galaxy 2Were you involved or how did the decision come about to announce that Guardians 2 was coming at Comic-Con?

Kevin [Feige] came up to me and said, 'Hey, listen, you know,' cause we were coming out in a week. I hadn't been greenlit on 2 yet. So he came up and he's like, you know, frankly they were gonna announce some other things that got announced, just recently. And they didn't have contracts signed and things done and so he said, 'We need to announce some stuff. So what about you and Chris announcing, you know, Guardians 2?' And Chris and I were both there that day. And I was like 'Well we're greenlit? All right, sounds good, buddy.'

And so what is the status? Are you still writing?

The story's written. That's it.

James Gunn Guardians of the GalaxyYou mentioned that the idea of this being a trilogy was not necessarily correct.  But we do know that Marvel likes to think in trilogies. Iron Man, Thor, now Cap, even Avengers to an extent. Now what do you do to the characters to make them live, not in just not just beyond two films, but three films, 10 films, you know?

Oh I think these characters can go on forever. I think the thing is but you gotta keep it real and you gotta keep them from becoming the typical good guys in every movie. I think they have a lot of different facets to their personality. I think that the way Guardians is structured, t's not structured as a superhero movie. It's not structured as an action movie or a comedy. It's structured as a family drama. And that's really what it is. So it's gotta be, just following it through in that respect in terms of these characters that are all interconnected. Where are they going and what are their relationships and how do they change and how do they stay the same?

Guardians of the Galaxy is on Blu-ray Tuesday. Guardians of the Galaxy 2 is out May 5, 2017.