This weekend at Comic-Con International: San Diego, one of the Marvel Cinematic Universe's biggest mysteries was seemingly solved when it was revealed that Star-Lord's father in Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 is none other than a version of Ego the Living Planet, as played by Kurt Russell. Some fans were put off by such a "spoiler" being revealed before the film's first trailers were even shown, but director James Gunn says there's a good reason the reveal came so early - because it's not really a "spoiler" at all.
“People have been particularly excited, confused, and supportive of keeping Marvel Cosmic truly cosmic with the reveal of Peter Quill's father's identity. However, there have been a minority of folks who have questioned, and even been angry, that I and Marvel would reveal something so major months before the film comes out,” said Gunn in a typically candid Facebook post. “I get it. If we lived in a perfect world, I wouldn't tell you anything before you walked in to see Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2. I wouldn't tell you Groot was now Baby Groot, I wouldn't tell you Mantis was in the movie, I wouldn't say that Ayesha and Taserface are our antagonists, that Yondu and Nebula have incredibly important roles in the film, nor would I tell you that Quill's father is Ego the Living Planet.”
“However, the world is imperfect,” he continued. “Firstly, we have to advertise our film. And it will be impossible to show you very much of Vol. 2 since Ego is very much a part of all of it. We just don't have a way around it.”
“Secondly, there are journalists online who love giving you scoops about characters and plot twists in upcoming films. Ego is such a big part of the movie, this was going to come out soon, as much as we've tried to hide it (when our online press day happened on set, Kurt Russell sat in a chair that read ‘J'son,’ and all of our script pages and artwork featuring him used the same name). Frankly, I would rather be in control of the announcement myself than have it come out on SpoilersRUs.com in a few weeks.”
But Gunn assured fans that knowing the identity of Star-Lord’s father wouldn’t dampen the film, saying it’s not like going into The Empire Strikes Back already knowing the Darth Vader is Luke Skywalker’s father - something modern viewers have known almost inescapably since 1980 whether they saw the movie in theaters or not.
“That said, knowing who Quill's father is will not diminish your enjoyment of the film in any way. The story is not built to be a shocking twist in the same way Luke's father was Darth, Soylent Green was people, Rosebud was a sled, or that that pretty woman from Crying Game had a penis (I guess I should have said spoilers before all that). Ego [is] the emotional center of Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 from the beginning to the end, and is not a twist. And believe me - there are many, many more surprises we still have in store for you from Vol. 2 - hopefully the biggest of which is how much you'll love the movie itself. Because, to me, that's the only twist that matters.”
Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 is scheduled to be released in theaters May 5, 2017.