Fan-favorite character Groot (Vin Diesel) appears to meet his match in newly-released Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3 test footage.
The footage comes via a tweet by Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3 writer-director James Gunn. It opens with the all-CGI Groot walking onto a live-action soundstage, before playfully capering for the camera. Groot’s hijinks are abruptly cut short by the sudden arrival of an Abilisk — one of the tentacled, battery-chomping creatures featured in both Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 and Vol. 3. Clearly intimidated by the Abilisk, Groot hastily departs the soundstage as the behemoth fills the frame.
The Groot test footage is the latest of several Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3 behind-the-scenes clips Gunn has shared to promote the Marvel Cinematic Universe blockbuster’s release. The first of these clips featured baby Rocket (Bradley Cooper) playing with another young raccoon prior to being experimented on by the High Evolutionary (Chukwudi Iwuji). The second and third clips dropped soon after and spotlighted the older, post-experimentation incarnation of Rocket and one of his cellmates, Floor (Mikaela Hoover), respectively. All four clips were produced by Framestore, one of 11 visual effects houses credited on Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3.
Groot’s Big Change in GotG Vol. 3
Framestore’s effects work on Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3 presumably included developing and animating the CG model for Groot’s final form, as well. This towering version of the fan-favorite tree-like alien only appears briefly in the sequel during the first of its two post-credits scenes, which also introduces the revamped Guardians of the Galaxy team line-up. Aside from Groot, the revised roster includes Cosmo the Spacedog (Maria Bakalova), Kraglin Obfonteri (Sean Gunn), Adam Warlock (Will Poulter), Phyla (Kai Zen) and Blurp, with Rocket (Bradley Cooper) taking over from Peter Quill/Star-Lord (Chris Pratt) as team leader.
Groot’s final form isn’t the only change to his portrayal in Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3, either. The franchise’s third installment also supplies Groot with a new phrase, which he utters late in the film’s third act. As the original Guardians of the Galaxy team meet for seemingly the last time, Groot blurts out the line “I love you guys.” This marks a break from Groot’s dialogue across his MCU appearances to date, in which (save for one other instance) he has only said the words “I am Groot.”
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