Director James Gunn Talks “The Ending” of Rocket’s Story, “Holiday Special” and More in New Interview

The Guardians of the Galaxy Holiday Special is about to debut on Disney+ tomorrow and director James Gunn has shared some new insights on that and the upcoming Guardians of the Galaxy vol. 3.

  • The biggest takeaway from Gunn’s new interview with Entertainment Tonight, is something Marvel fans have been both expecting and fearing for some time: what Gunn refers to as “the ending” of Rocket’s story:
    • “It’s got the fun that we expect of the Guardians but it’s also an incredibly serious story in some ways, where we tell the end of the story of the Guardians and the end of the story of Rocket,” Gunn said of vol. 3. “We need to go back to the beginning to tell the ending.”
  • Gunn would later double down on the emotion and dark undertones of the upcoming third film and went back to Rocket being a source of that:
    • “Although there’s always been this fun and this funny stuff, there is this very sort of dark undercurrent underneath, you know, and a lot of it has to do with Rocket for me.”
  • On the topic of the Holiday Special, Gunn talks about bringing in Kevin Bacon to play himself. The video shares a clip from an interview with Bacon in which he explains that he was blown away when he heard his name mentioned by Star-Lord in the original Guardians of the Galaxy.
  • Gunn goes on to explain that he called Bacon himself and pitched the idea of the Holiday Special and the actor immediately agreed to do it.
  • Gunn also touches on the impact of the Holiday Special on the MCU going forward:
    • “Some of that was just my ability to sneak in things that I don’t have to mention in Guardians 3. ‘Cause when you have a movie, it’s just like, you have so many things you’ve got to bring up when you’re hopping between these different franchises so, the fact that we had Cosmo the dog, the fact that they had this amazing spaceship called the Bowie that’s four stories tall, in real life that thing is four stories tall, and that they have, you know, they bought Knowhere from The Collector. That’s their home base now. All of those things are important to Vol. 3.”
  • And of course, the big question on everyone’s mind is “what should we call this new version of Groot?”
  • Gunn lets us know that his name is “Swol Groot:”
    • “He’s jacked man, he’s jacked. I think he’s like the collegiate, like excitable football Groot. I think you can see now that he’s very much a different Groot thant the original Groot. He’s becoming his own, not person, he’s becoming his own Groot.”
  • The Guardians of the Galaxy Holiday Special will debut on Disney+ on November 25 and Guardians of the Galaxy vol. 3 will be released in theaters on May 5, 2023.