— May 7, 2021
Drax the Destroyer and Mantis could have starred in their own Guardians of the Galaxy spinoff if James Gunn would have gotten his way. Currently, Gunn is preparing to start shooting Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3 later this year. Dave Bautista and Pom Klementieff will both return as Drax and Mantis, respectively, though they’ll first be seen making a special appearance in the upcoming Marvel sequel Thor: Love and Thunder.
In a new interview with Digital Spy, Dave Bautista suggested that Guardians 3 would be his final movie as Drax the Destroyer. He also spoke about a planned spinoff movie that Gunn had in mind for Drax and Mantis. While Bautista thought the idea was “brilliant,” it ultimately never came to be, seemingly because Marvel wasn’t interested. From the interview:
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“There were talks for a while about a Drax and Mantis film. It was really because it was James Gunn’s idea. He really wanted to do a Drax and Mantis film. He laid it out to me. I thought it was such a brilliant idea, but I haven’t heard any follow-up from the studio. I don’t think they’re very interested, or it doesn’t fit into the way they have things mapped out. But other than that, [there are no other plans for Drax]. I mean, as far as my obligations, I’ve got Guardians 3, and that’s probably going to be the end of Drax.”
Also in the interview, Bautista addressed how he nearly worked with James Gunn again on The Suicide Squad. It’s not clear who he would have played, but Gunn had apparently written a small role for Bautista. Unfortunately, Bautista had to make a choice when the offer came along to star in Zack Snyder’s Army of the Dead for Netflix, and the Drax actor ended up pulling out of Gunn’s movie.
“I had The Suicide Squad where I got to work with my boy again, even though it’s a smaller role, and then I had Army of the Dead on which I get to work with Zack, I get to build a relationship with Netflix, I get a lead role in a great film – and I get paid a lot more money. I had to call James, and I told him, ‘It breaks my heart, because as a friend, I want to be there with you, but professionally, this is the smart decision for me.’ He said, ‘I completely get it. I’m proud of you that you’re even in this position. I’m proud that I had something to do with you being in this position where you have to make these hard decisions.'”
Drax and Mantis can next be seen on the big screen when Thor: Love and Thunder premieres on May 6, 2022. They’ll then appear in The Guardians of the Galaxy Holiday Special on Disney+ in late 2022 before Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3 arrives on May 5, 2023. As for Bautista, fans can catch him in Zack Snyder’s zombie movie Army of the Dead this month when it hits Netflix on May 14. This news comes to us from Digital Spy.
James Gunn Really Wanted a Drax & Mantis Movie, But Marvel Wasn’t Interested