My Guardians of the Galaxy Vol 2 Set Visit Experience
Last year I broke news that myself along with twelve other bloggers got to spend the day on the set of Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2. I still can’t believe that I was there. It’s been so surreal and now that I’m getting to share some of the juicy details from set, it’s starting to feel like a reality. We started our time on set by talking with Producer Jonathan Schwartz.
Disclaimer: This post may contain spoiler type reveals from Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2. Read at your own risk.
Jonathan started by talking to us about where Vol 2 picks up from the end of the last movie. The movie picks up a couple of months after the end of the last movie. The Guardians have been taking mercenary work around the galaxy trying to pay their bills. When we first see them they are on a mission trying to protect a planet from this horrible, tentacle beast, which according to Jonathan we’ll be seeing alot of. He also shared about some of the personal changes with the characters.
Jonathan S: When we first meet the Guardians, you can sort of see it in some of their costume changes.They’ve evolved a little bit from the way they looked in Guardians 1. James definitely wanted to put them — kind of a more like rock and roll, Rolling Stones, direction just to kind of get across. The Guardians are a little full of themselves now. They’re a little famous. They saved the entire planet of Zandar and they’re like, oh, yeah, we’re famous all over the galaxy. We can do whatever we want. And as you can imagine the fame is kind of going to their heads a little bit and making it difficult to live with each other.
The team are all living on Quill’s ship the Milano, and it’s getting a bit crowded. That cause some tension within the group and due to their actions they end up stranded on a planet, that’s where Quill’s story gets more involed.
Jonathan S: It’s there that they meet up with Kurt Russell character, we’re calling Jayson, who is Quill’s biological father, who’s been searching for him for a long, long time. And he’s kind of the intergalactic adventurer who’s been going from planet to planet having his own kind of outer space adventures. He’s been looking for his long-lost son and sort of takes Quill with him to his own planet. That’s kind of the beginning of, of the split in the Guardians. Some of the Guardians stay behind with the Milano ship with Peter. Some go off with Quill and Jayson.
Jonathan also shared with us some of the new characters that are appearing in this new film, in addition to Kurt Russell’s character that I already mentioned before.
Jonathan S: There’s a new character in this movie called Mantis, who’s a classic Guardian for the comics, who’s totally amazing. Mantis kind of works with, with Jayson the Kurt Russell character. And Mantis and Drax kind of have a really interesting relationship, which they tell you more about. It evolves over the course of the movie.
Yondu has his own set of problems in this movie, he has to deal with the events of the first movie and we’ll also get to see more of his relationship with Quill.
Jonathan S: Meanwhile, because Yondu let Quill go at the end of Guardians 1, there’s kind of a rift forming in that ravenger camp. And a lot of those ravengers think that Quill should die or that Yondu should no longer be the captain of that group. Over the course of the movie, there’s a big ravenger mutiny led by a character named Taserface. Then Taserface kinda takes over the ravengers and takes Rocket and Yondu and little Brute captive.
They’ll eventually escape from the rapture ship that we saw in movie one. It’s a big action sequence that we’re really excited about. It involves a lot of awesome big Brute stuff. Part of that escape is Yondu getting his amazing new pompadour, big fin back, which is kind of a ode to Yondu’s look for the comics and also looks awesome, which should be super sweet. And, of course, this is kind of a nod back to our slow-mo shot from movie one, but this little group and silly Rocket and Yondu’s big fin walking down the hallway slow motion.
You can’t talk about this movie without talking about the music from the film. The first soundtrack was awesome, but we were all wondering about that second take Quill received at the end of the last movie.
Jonathan S: It’s a cooler mix, I think. And I think James is really great at writing that music for specific moments so that it’s not on the necessarily but feels like what you want it to feel and, and can kinda be a fun counterpoint to what’s happening in the movie in a very similar way to the way it was in movie one. Some of the songs on the movie two I can’t stop singing. I go nuts.
I think the music plays a much bigger role directly in the plot than it did in movie one. The music is much more important to the actual story of the movie.
Once we finished talking with Jonathan, we had the opportunity to visit with Property Master Russell Bobbitt. He’s the one responsible for the props we see in the movie. He worked on Iron Man 1,2 & 3, THOR, and a couple of the Captain America movies. It’s Russell’s job to read the script and what kind of props the actors need. He shared a bit of the process with us.
Russell B: I’ll go over the script and, and sort of make a big list of everything I think should be in the movie and then I think outside the box and I’ll do the background stuff like the background alien person walks by, what’s he gonna have in his hand? We design, manufacture and engineer everything basically from scratch on a movie like this because we’re in outer space and there is no outer space prop rental house or an outer space store that I can go to and say I’d like, you know, 800 outer space weapons.
So we draw everything and I show the director, I get approval, I get with the actors and I figure out what their characters are gonna be and we come up with a plan. And from there I go into the manufacture process and start figuring out how big it then should be for a person your size or how big the weapon should be for Drax, the big character.
To create the different weapons for the movie, Russell and his crew pretty much create everything from scratch. He uses this paint called Alsa to achieve the metal look on the plastic pieces he uses to create weapons for the film. The paint costs one thousand dollars a gallon. When creating weapons for the film, in addition to creating for the main characters, Russell has to create for the background characters as well. We wanted to know if any of the weapons from the first film was used in the second movie.
Russell B: We used a couple of things, like Drax’s knives, you don’t go to the Drax knife store and get new knives. So, we used the same knives and Gamora’s sword, this is the same. And then the Walkman that Chris wears, was insanely challenging in that there’s plenty of the Walkman’s out there. You can find those. But the headset, allegedly Sony had a fire in the warehouse and all of that model burned to the ground.
So I asked my boys and the people that shop for me to find them. Go online, go to Ebay, do what you do to find those headsets and we found two pair. Eight thousand dollars each because they were in Guardians of the Galaxy 1. And nothing irks me more than having to pay eight thousand dollars for something that we made popular in the first place that was a $12 purchase.
In the end Russell ended up manufacturing the headset himself, while it cost more than eight thousand dollars initially, he’ll be able to re-create them whenever he wants. Director James Gunn, was very impressed with how Russell overcame the obstacle. When we asked him about working with his director he said the secret is being able to get inside their heads to know what they want and creating that vision. Since this wasn’t his first time working with Gunn, he already knew what he likes and dislike. We wanted to know where all these props ended up after filming was over.
Russell B: They go to the magical Marvel warehouse. We’ve all borrowed from each other. You know, obviously Thor 3 is happening in Australia, so the Thor 3 prop guys will call up our magical Marvel warehouse and say, send all the crates out from Thor. We send em all out there. They use em. They make new stuff, then it all gets compiled, goes back to the warehouse because we’re about to do Avengers.
Before leaving we had the opportunity to hold some of the space weapons that appears in the fil. If you look closely you’ll see us holding some Laser Canons, Quad Blasters, and more. It was such a cool experience. All we needed was some make-up and costumes to be added to Yondu’s band of space pirates.
We saw and touched so many amazing props from the film but we were most excited about being able to hold Baby Groot. He’s grown a little since. Russell gave us a little bit of details about the new Baby Groot.
Russell B: This one’s made out of silicone, very much like the tree because he’s posable. So I can make him sit and stand and so on and James Gunn is so incredibly attached to Baby Groot it’s unbelievable. And, and, two, he designed every sprout and every piece of moss on and like it was a huge process.
Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 opens in theaters on May 5th, 2017. You can check out the newest trailer below.
Be sure to come tomorrow and the rest of the week for more awesome coverage of my GOTG 2 set visit. Including interviews with the cast, director James Gunn, and a special filming experience.
About Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2:
Set to the all-new sonic backdrop of Awesome Mixtape #2, Marvel Studios’ “Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2” continues the team’s adventures as they traverse the outer reaches of the cosmos. The Guardians must fight to keep their newfound family together as they unravel the mystery of Peter Quill’s true parentage. Old foes become new allies and fan-favorite characters from the classic comics will come to our heroes’ aid as the Marvel Cinematic Universe continues to expand. “Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2” blasts into theaters on May 5, 2017.