Marvel went all in on Guardians of the Galaxy during the Super Bowl. Even though the studio is releasing three movies this year, including Spider-Man: Homecoming and Thor: Ragnarok, Marvel decided to give their ad time to Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2, and I don't think any fans are complaining. In addition to the new spot that aired during the Super Bowl, a brand new poster for the highly-anticipated sequel has also made its way online.
The poster was released not long after Marvel Studios released an extended version of their Super Bowl commercial online, which clocked in at just under a minute long, but had a ton of new footage to offer. The poster itself is playing on the popularity of Awesome Mix Vol. 1, the soundtrack to the first movie. In this poster, all of the central characters in Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 are given their very own mixtapes, complete with hand-drawn art to go along with it. James Gunn shared the poster on his Facebook page and joked about the tapes being from his personal collection.
"A closer look at my cassette collection."
In addition to showing off some fun cassette tapes for the various members of the Guardians of the Galaxy, Baby Groot also makes an appearance at the bottom of the poster looking all kinds of angry. Maybe he doesn't like mixtapes as much as the rest of us do? The most interesting bit about the poster is that one of the tapes is turned around so you can't read the label, but you can see that it is for Kurt Russell, who we know is playing Star-Lord's dad as Ego the Living Planet. It seems like they are keeping something a secret here, or maybe they have it this way because Star-Lord, at least in the beginning of this movie, doesn't know who his dad is.
Marvel seems to be well aware that they have a potentially massive hit on their hands. The first Guardians of the Galaxy surpassed even the wildest expectations and this movie will almost certainly best that, assuming it isn't a terrible movie, which doesn't seem likely at this point. The marketing for Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 has leaned a lot on Baby Groot, which people seem to love. However, many have accused Marvel and James Gunn of just using him to sell toys, which is what happened on the Facebook comment thread when the director shared the poster with his fans. In a response, James Gunn made it very clear that this was never the case.
"Honestly, I'm sick of people saying he's in the movie to drive toy sales. Disney never even knew he was in the movie until they read my script. I'm the one who created Baby Groot and he serves an important purpose for the film and for me creatively while making the film. I love him. And I like him in the corner of this poster. So maybe you guys need to chill out with throwing out your assumptions as facts. And yes I know he's going to make a billion dollars in toy sales. I don't have any problem with that, I loved having Star Wars toys to go with the movies so that's a thrill for me. But that's a byproduct not the reason for Baby Groot, on my life and by God (and I take swears like this seriously) that wasn't the reason for me putting him in the script or movie.
In addition to the latest poster, some brand new photos and behind-the-scenes images from Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 have also been released, which you can check out below. The movie stars Chris Pratt, Zoe Saldana, Dave Bautista, Bradley Cooper, Vin Diesel, Sylvester Stallone, Pom Klementieff, Michael Rooker, Karen Gillan, Elizabeth Debicki and Kurt Russell. Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 is written and directed by James Gunn and is set for release on May 5, 2017.