“Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3” will be James Gunn’s final Marvel Cinematic Universe film before he turns his attention to running DC Studios, but he has one more treat for fans before he departs the MCU.
Next week, Gunn’s longtime passion project “The Guardians of the Galaxy Holiday Special” will begin streaming on Disney+. The one-off event is an homage to the infamous “Star Wars Holiday Special” as well as many of the more warmly received specials that families watch each Christmas.
In a new interview with The Hollywood Reporter, Gunn opened up about his creative process behind the holiday special. As it turns out, his passion for the subject matter and familiarity with the cast and characters made it an extremely easy script to write.
“I’ll be honest, I wrote the screenplay in a few hours, so it just kind of spilled out of me. It was very easy,” Gunn said. “Everything about shooting it was easy. Everything about getting the performances out of people was easy, whereas ‘Vol. 3’ was torture in every way.”
Gunn explained that he was able to achieve higher production value than would normally be feasible for a Christmas TV special because he shot it on the same sets as next year’s feature film. In addition to saving money, it also allowed him to create more narrative synergy between the two projects.
“I shot them simultaneously,” he said. “One of the great benefits of the special was being able to introduce elements into the movie that I don’t have to then explain at the beginning of the movie, such as Cosmo the Spacedog [Maria Bakalova] or the fact that they live in the Head of Knowhere, their new residence, or introducing their spaceship, the Bowie, which, in real life, is this four-story set. It’s the most amazing set I’ve ever been on, and so we were able to utilize those sets that we had the money to build for ‘Vol. 3,’ in the special. We otherwise wouldn’t have had that type of money to build these million-dollar sets.”
“The Guardians of the Galaxy Holiday Special” begins streaming on Disney+ on Friday, November 25.