Even before Guardians of the Galaxy rocketed to the top of the box office last August, there were rumblings from Marvel about an animated series to follow up on the film, and after Guardians became one of the biggest films of 2014, it seemed like a no-brainer. Marvel finally confirmed in October that an animated series is indeed happening and will join other Marvel cartoons Ultimate Spider-Man, Avengers Assemble and Hulk and the Agents of S.M.A.S.H. on Disney XD sometime this year.
We've known since that October announcement that the show will be set after the events of the film, feature the same five-member team and include Thanos in a prominent role. What we didn't know was who would voice the characters. Now Disney has announced the first member of the Guardians of the Galaxy animated cast, and if you've been watching superhero cartoons for the last 15 years or so, you probably already know his voice.
Voice actor Kevin Michael Richardson will play fan-favorite character Groot on the series, filling the role portrayed by Vin Diesel on the big screen. Richardson's been working in animation and videogames for more than two decades, and he's built a massive and impressive list of credits, ranging from the Joker in The Batman to Nick Fury on The Super Hero Squad Show to Bishop on Wolverine and the X-Men and many, many more. He's a bright star in the voiceover world, and animation fans know him well.
As part of the announcement, Disney released a short video of Richardson introducing himself and, of course, offering his first rendition of Groot's signature (and only) phrase. Check it out:
The series still doesn't have a definitive release date, but THR reports that Disney will announce more voice cast members later this week, so it looks like Guardians of the Galaxy is coming together fast.