James Gunn is one of my favorite filmmakers because he has that awkward sense of humor that I absolutely love. Well, it looks like his twisted sensibilities are coming to Marvel’s Guardians of the Galaxy, and if the fact that Joss Whedon and Shane Black were allowed to keep their personalities in their respective movies, there is no reason to think Gunn will be any different. With that in mind, it makes the news that Rocket Raccoon and Groot are set to steal the movie from their human counterparts warm the cockles of my heart.
For those lacking in the comic book lore of Guardians of the Galaxy, Rocket Raccoon is a genetically created creature who resembles an earthling raccoon – except with a bad attitude and the propensity to shoot anyone who mistakes him for a raccoon. His closest ally is Groot – a giant tree creature.
With the other three members of the Guardians being a human named Star Lord (Chris Pratt), a green skinned alien assassin named Gamora (Zoe Saldana) and a beastly alien with a human soul named Drax the Destroyer (Dave Bautista), the fact that the two non-humanoid characters, Rocket Raccoon and Groot, will stand out is awesome.
“We can take it to all those crazy places as long as all the characters respond in an emotionally truthful way,” Marvel head Kevin Feige said. “That’s why I believe people are going to respond to Chris Pratt and to an alien Zoë Saldana—because they did respond to that one time before [with Avatar]. And to a tree and a raccoon who, it is certainly our intention, will steal the whole movie.”
Feige said that Pratt was “hilarious” and “moving,” which is why he got the role while Bautista had great “banter” and “ad libs,” which locked up his role. He didn’t mention Saldana, but she was probably cast because she kicks ass and will look great in the next-to-nothing costume of Gamora.
He did say, once again, that Rocket Raccoon is the “heart of the movie,” so they want to make sure his casting is perfect. Groot just says “I am Groot,” which means pretty much anything he happens to be saying, so the voice actor they cast for him won’t be as important.
Anyway, check out a couple of images of production art with Rocket Raccoon and Groot along with the rest of the Guardians of the Galaxy movie.