Filming on Guardians Of The Galaxy: Vol. 2 is set to wrap up production within the next week, and director James Gunn has been steadily releasing fun bits for fans, including news of when cast members have wrapped, as well as weekly What we Shot Wednesday images to try and get fans guessing as to what’s going on. Like most of Marvel’s recent hires, Gunn has always been quite open with fans, answering what questions he can through Twitter & Facebook, and making sure to keep us up to date with what’s going on concerning the Guardians. So it isn’t too surprising that, while on Anna Faris‘ podcast recently, the director openly talked about how he came to work on Guardians, what led to him casting Pratt, and when he actually began writing the sequel.

If you’ll recall, before Guardians of the Galaxy even premiered, Marvel Studios took the time to announce the movie’s sequel at the end of their SDCC panel. Of course, this isn’t something Marvel typically does, as they prefer to wait and see how the film will premiere. But Guardians wasn’t just any film. It was tracking massive at that point, and actually opened higher than the first Thor and Captain America, cementing its unique place within the Marvel Cinematic Universe. So, while the first Guardians was hitting movie theaters, Gunn was already hard at work on developing the sequel: Guardians of the Galaxy: Vol. 2. In fact, he admitted that he even had parts of the script for the sequel in mind before the first movie came out. But once production on Vol. 2 began, it was like he dropped off the face of the earth. While speaking with Faris for her Unqualified podcast, Gunn talked about the difference between the solitude of writing and the buzz of direction.

I think it’s an adequate expression of who I am, I think I have that part of myself that likes to isolate, likes to be alone, likes to explore myself, and then I have another part that’s very social. For me, the back and forth works really well for who I am as a human being.

Faris, who is married to Guardians star, Chris Pratt, spoke about how filming Guardians Of The Galaxy affects Pratt, and how important his relationship is with Gunn.

Chris is so happy working with you, it really makes a lot of difference… as soon as he started Guardians 2, he had a different kind of joy about him, and I felt that, and it’s really wonderful.

There is an energy that Pratt brings to the role of Star-Lord that is infectious. According to Gunn, there is also an energy between the two men, who work extremely well together professionally.

I adore him, and he is one of the closest things I have to a younger brother, and he’s just a great guy. And we have a great collaboration, you know, that our imaginations work really well, and we counter each other very well, and we’re very very different in just the right ways, and were the same in the right ways as well, and I think this makes for a great collaboration.

Gunn and Faris spoke at length about Pratt behind the scenes. While the actor’s experience in film and television gives the audience the impression that he is full of lightheartedness, they say that he has a very serious side.

He is very, in a very simple way I think the most unusual thing about Chris, he’s a very serious guy… I think people think of him as this fun guy, which he is, he is a fun guy, but … he’s a really serious person, very cerebral… That’s a different type of actor to work with.

When it came to casting Star-Lord, there were a lot of well-known actors that auditioned for the role, but it ultimately came down to Pratt – someone that many fans thought would be an odd choice to lead a franchise of this magnitude. Of course, as we all know by now, Gunn wasn’t entirely sold on casting Pratt originally, but along with a little nudge from his casting director, Gunn ended up circling back to Pratt and he knew immediately that Pratt was Star-Lord.

Within twenty seconds of him reading, I knew he was the guy… I was looking for somebody who was, like Downey was with Tony Stark basically, somebody who could fulfill the all the words I had on the page, but at the same time brought something extra outside of that to the role, because just being this charming, funny guy, wasn’t enough, basically.

Gunn continued to explain that it was Pratt’s vulnerability, as an actor, combined with his cockiness, that makes him a modern movie star. Gunn and Faris went on to talk about Gunn’s path to becoming the director of a Marvel film, which he had always wanted but never expected. When originally brought in to talk about bringing the story to life, he didn’t believe it could be done. But as he was driving home, the idea came to him to center the story around Rocket, and he was able to bring something back to the studio.

Guardians of the Galaxy 2 is currently finishing up with filming in Atlanta and will be moving into post-production within the next week or two. The film will be released May 5, 2017.

Source: Anna Faris Unqualified