I can’t explain the excitement set visits bring to me. I guess maybe it’s the equivalence of Christmas morning to a child. Last year I broke the secret thatI had the opportunity to go on a Guardians of the Galaxy Vol 2 Set Visit, and this week I will finally be able to share what I saw and what I learned in exclusive interviews and photos.
Guardians of the Galaxy Vol 2 Set Visit
We visited the props department and met with Property Mater Russell Bobbitt who has worked on numerous Marvel films such as Iron Man 1, 2, 3, Ant-Man, Thor, and even the latest Captain America film. “I receive a script, I am then to create the props they need for the universe that they happen to be in.”
“As I read the script, I sort of make a list of what I think should be in the movie. I try to think out of the box, I do the background stuff, like what the people in the background are even carrying or wearing.”
Everything is taken into account when creating props. “I have to size up the props to the characters.” And he makes several different types of the same prop. For example, when making the Quad Blasters and Laser Canons, they make some that are heavy, and some that are made of foam or rubber to make it bearable to carry around all day. But for some scenes, the weight is important. “The art of dealing with directors is reading their minds. I have learned what James likes and it helps when planning the props.”
If you look behind us in the photo you see a bunch of belts hanging up. Russel shared with us that to make them look as cool as they do, he used things like the insides of old cell phones. I wish I had a close-up of how cool these and all the props we got to see. It’s truly such a cool department to hang out in and listen to the stories of how the creative process happens.
Producing Guardians of the Galaxy Vol 2
We also had some time with Producer Jonathan Schwartz. We were sitting in a room full of original concept art and storyboards he shared, “There are a lot of different color spaces in a lot of these worlds.” As he points around at the different pieces of artwork hanging on the walls, “Color was something we looked a lot at in movie one. And again on movie two. I think there’s a really specific color journey that James [Gunn] has in mind to sort of help differentiate these worlds from the audience. Color (scheme) is a way we convey ‘mood’ to the audience. That’s something we’re paying a lot of attention to but I hope it comes off in a really pulpy way–where the color impresses itself upon you. It’s a colorful movie, but also helps the audience feel what the movie intends it to feel at certain moments.”
We were curious to know just how much inspiration is from the actual comics versus the producer’s minds? “It’s a mix. On movie one, we definitely paid a lot of attention to a very specific comic… from 2008, that Lanning run. I think more so than specifics from the story that’s in that run, it was kind of the spirit of those comics that evolve in the Guardians of the Galaxy. I think that’s true here too. Those comics were so much and had so much heart to them, and it really had a core group of characters that really worked. I think that’s what’s kind of animating everything in the movie.”
Regarding the music, is the second film’s soundtrack going to be as good as the first? Better? New stuff? All old?
“I’m a little biased. I think it’s way better. I really liked the music on movie one, and a lot of it was music I never heard before.” We are all shocked. “I never heard Come and Get Your Love before James Gunn was like ‘yeah, it’s gotta be that song in that movie.’
On movie two, I think I was a little bit more familiar with some of it. Maybe that’s cause I’d been listening to ’70s music for two years now. But, it’s cooler. It’s cooler mix, I think. And I think James is really great at writing that music for specific moments so that it’s not on the necessarily, but feels like what you want it to feel, and can kinda be a fun counterpoint to what’s happening in the movie, in a very similar way to the way it was in movie one. Some of the songs in movie two–I can’t stop singing. I go nuts.
I think the music plays a much bigger role directly in the plot than it did in movie one. Like the music is much more important to the actual story of the movie.
It was really kind of cool during movie one, how people responded to that music. Like younger people who had never heard some of those songs before were like ‘this is cool… I wanna get into this,’ which was great because it was kinda the same way for me. Maybe not to the same extent, but it was like, wait a minute, these are amazing. This era of music is so awesome. And it sort of got people going on ’70s music in a way that they, maybe, weren’t before.”
Blue screen and Cast in Costumes during the Guardians of the Galaxy Vol 2 Set Visit
The highlight of the day could have very well have been being on the set as the cast was filming THIS scene!
Also – see all those amazing people in that photo? They will all be part of my coverage this week!
Lights, Camera, Action
Something very cool about this scene too is that it’s in the trailer that played during the Super Bowl this past weekend. In case you missed it, or you just want to see it again (I have watched it at least 10 times myself), here you go! This scene is around the :47-second mark.
Walking around on the actual set is something insanely special, and the best way to share this with my readers in these photos. Very exclusive, and something that most don’t get to see. I will be sharing more with each interview post this week.
We had interviewed the cast prior to going on the set, so it was fun to see them all working and even getting a wave or acknowledgment from them. Chris Pratt walks around talking to the cast and crew and is easily the biggest cut up from what we could see. But even while working, you could tell that this group is a family.
Make sure to check back as I share my interviews with Chris Pratt (“Peter Quill/Star-Lord”), Zoe Saldana (“Gamora”), Dave Bautista (“Drax”), Michael Rooker (“Yondu”), Karen Gillan (“Nebula”) and Director James Gunn.
Guardians of the Galaxy opens May 5, 2017
*I was invited by Disney/Marvel to attend a special press trip to share my experience with my readers. All opinions are my own.