James Gunn confirms Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3, but there's a catch

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Apr 27, 2017, 11:41 AM EDT (Updated)

Though our gaze has turned ahead somewhat to the gargantuan Avengers: Infinity War and the cosmically strange Thor: Ragnarok, we have not forgotten abut Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2. Marvel's latest space adventure is the next superhero film on our schedule, and though it's still more than a month away, we're already seeing interviews with the filmmakers emerge that shed some light on what might be coming next.

While promoting his new film The Belko Experiment, Guardians director James Gunn was asked not just about the upcoming flick but a possible third installment. He confirmed what those of us certain of Vol. 2's box-office success already suspected: Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3 will happen.

"There will be a Guardians 3, that's for sure," Gunn told Complex. "We're trying to figure it out."

That's not surprising. Vol. 2 seems destined for a starship-load of money later this year, and while Marvel has yet to lay out any new plans for films following the third and fourth Avengers flicks, another Guardians movie always felt like a safe bet. What's really interesting is what Gunn said next ...

"I'm trying to figure out what I want to do really, that's all it is. I got to figure out where I want to be, what I want to spend the next three years of my life doing. You know, I'm going to make another big movie; is it the Guardians or something else? I'm just going to figure it out over the next couple of weeks."

That's right, it's time to talk abut the possibility that Gunn will pass the Guardians torch to anther filmmaker after putting a stamp on the franchise embedded deeper than any other Marvel filmmaker so far. For several years now, it's almost felt like these are Gunn's characters and Gunn's world, but as we move closer to merging the franchises into Infinity War, we're reminded that these characters are corporate-owned, and at some point Gunn will depart for other projects.

So, will he stick around for at least one more film? We don't know, and it sounds like Gunn's not sure yet either. After finishing Age of Ultron, Joss Whedon sounded like he just wanted to disappear for a little while. Gunn seems decidedly more chipper abut his latest Marvel experience (he calls Vol. 2 the most creatively fulfilling experience of his career), but making a blockbuster like this is a grind. It's a long ride, and Guardians has no doubt opened up many other opportunities for Gunn that he could pursue outside of the Marvel Studios banner. It's a big decision, and Marvel's cosmic future could change entirely based on what Gunn does next.

What do you think? Will Gunn stick around for Guardians Vol. 3?