James Gunn has become known for interacting with fans and audiences through his social media. Following the release of The Suicide Squad, he’s hard at work on Marvel’s Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3. The director took to Twitter to pull back the curtain on his filmmaking process, revealing his deep appreciation for storyboarding and how he creates his unique visual style.
According to Gunn, designing the film has become “the most important part of his job at this point.” Through the storyboards, the director leaves notes and cues for costume designers, production designers, the stunt team, and actors. These notes comprise more than just what Gunn sees. They describe what he hears and feels about the film, as he notes the script is just simply “describing what he sees visually.” He refers to this as his ‘film Bible.’ This process is extremely extensive, as Gunn noted in a response to a fan:
” Every shot in my movies is hand drawn first. That’s at least 2,500 shots or so per my recent films. Many of the shots – about 1/3 – take anywhere from 2 to 10 cards or more – because I’m drawing the movement. So I probably end up with about 3,000 cards. ”
Gunn also made note that this is a process that is all his own. Though he has worked with a storyboard artist in the past, his own drawings help to recall what he first envisioned. While the drawings aren’t amazing, they certainly create some innovative shots and exciting visuals in the final product. In the images that the Guardians director provided through his post, an action piece with a red-eyed figure and another with Chris Pratt‘s Peter Quill can be gleaned. There’s also a frame of what appears to be Baby Groot holding a tiny creature, and the young sapling still looks cute even in Gunn’s drawing.
Plot details for Guardians 3 are scarce at the moment, and these storyboards (though exciting) don’t provide clear story points. The entire main cast, consisting of Pratt, Zoe Saldana, Dave Bautista, Vin Diesel, Pom Klementieff, Karen Gillan, and Bradley Cooper, are all expected to return. Gunn confirmed back in November of 2020 that the script was finished, and cameras are expected to begin rolling this fall. Several of the actors, including Pratt, Bautista, Klementieff, Gillan, Diesel, and Sean Gunn are expected to appear in next year’s Thor: Love and Thunder. This appearance is prompted by Thor’s (Chris Hemsworth) departure with the Guardians at the end of Avengers: Endgame.
Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3 will hit theaters on May 5, 2023. You can check out Gunn’s tweets describing his process in detail below:
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