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Talking with the Cast of Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2

I attended as guest of Disney

My absolute favorite Marvel film of all time was Guardians of the Galaxy. I loved the music, the story, and the characters. When I learned that Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 was coming out this summer, I was beyond thrilled.

One day, I opened my email to find out that I was invited by Disney to an early screening of the film and to interview the cast of Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2. I was overwhelmed with excitement about seeing the film, and getting to be in the same room with some of the most talented people in Hollywood.

We played a game of Ro-Sham-Bo to see who in my family was going to be my guest to attend the screening of the film, and my youngest son Tyler was the lucky one who got to go with my to the Walt Disney Studios in Burbank to screen the film. The movie was better than we could have expected and we spent the entire drive home talking all about the twists and turns in the storyline.

I had a couple of days to process everything I saw in the movie before returning to Los Angeles to attend the press junket where a group of reporters would take turns asking the cast questions about the film.

I took my seat in the conference room and was giddy with excitement about the cast coming out to make their appearance. The first group that came out on the stage were Chris Pratt, Kurt Russell, Michael Rooker, Elizabeth Debicki, James Gunn, and Kevin Feige. Most would think that I would be most excited about seeing Chris Pratt, but I was the most excited to hear from Kurt Russell. He has been in some of my all-time favorite films, and I was curious to see what it was like to be a part of his first Marvel film.

Russell began by sharing with the audience that he is not much of a moviegoer and hadn’t seen the first film when presented with the script. “I knew that everybody loved it,” said Russell. Then he saw the film and immediately understood why everyone loves the film so much. “I immediately started wanting to do it. I told James that, I don’t want to mess this thing up, so I need your help,” said Russell.

I am not the only one who is a fan of Russell’s work in entertainment, and the entire cast is as well. How did the cast keep their cool when working with such a legacy in cinema? Chris Pratt said, “There’s this thing that happens. You promised yourself you’re not gonna do this thing that happens every time you meet someone who’s an icon. Someone that you’ve known way longer than they’ve ever known you and you’ve seen all their stuff, and you have this opportunity from time to time if you’re lucky to work with someone like Kurt Russell. And you promised yourself you’re not gonna do the thing where you geek out, but it’s a little inauthentic if you don’t.” Chris Pratt then turned to Russell and said, “I never would’ve imagined when I first moved to Hollywood, the greatest part of it, the biggest secret is you, is you become somebody’s friend and somebody’s peer rather than a fan. And that’s really nice, and I think Kurt and I have become friends.”

The cast continued to reminisce about their time together while working on the film. There was a great chemistry between the cast, and I felt like I was sitting in their living room listening to them chat with one another at a dinner party. Before I knew it, it was time for them to leave and the next group to come out on the stage.

The next group of the cast that took the stage was Zoe Saldana, Dave Bautista, Karen Gillan, Sean Gunn, Pom Klementieff, Sylvester Stallone, and Kevin Feige. Sylvester Stallone – in the flesh…right in front of me. I had to pinch myself. The first question that was asked when straight to Stallone to find out if there was some form initiation in joining the Marvel family. Stallone said, “Actually it was pretty painless. It was interesting because I love action films, but I haven’t ventured into the genre, so it was quite an experience. When I walked on the set, you know, you see robots and things and seven-feet woman, who is seven-foot tall and everything else, I thought it was great. It’s better than being up a tree in Burma. Much better. Trust me.”

The second panel from the cast got more into talking about the film, and the most important message behind the film – being that it is a story about family.

Zoe Saldana began by saying, “I think that what I loved the most and it may sound selfish but definitely the relationship between Gamora and Nebula. The reason that I love Guardians is that all of these characters are, not only do they look different. It’s because you know, whatever color of their skin or fur on their back is sort of like describing to you how different they are in the inside from each other. Yet there’s this increasing desire to belong and be accepted and be loved and not be abandoned, and I don’t see the Guardians as these awesome, kicking ass superheroes. I see them as these really delicate people that are just trying to get by day-by-day and the found ways through, by being like a-holes, which became like the defense mechanism. So I’m very familiar with that sort of aspect of a family, people that survive so many things, and they teach you to always give the benefit of the doubt – to keep looking within, because there is a very special person behind all that tough skin, and all that, all those walls, I guess. So that’s what family is for me.” After hearing her say this, it touched my heart in a special way, because this is a message that so many children of this generation need to see in films.

Then Dave Bautista added, “You’re not tied down to the people you’re born with and grow up with. I think anybody can be your family member; you make them your family members. You invite them into your lives and love them and care for them. To me, like my dogs, my dogs are my children now. I love them more than, you know, most people in the world. But I think, that’s it. It just doesn’t have to be one definition of family. I think just the people you love in your lives, like these people up here are like, we’re a family. I think that’s what it is and I think that’s the message of our film. Even though families may be dysfunctional, it’s still at the end of the day, do you love this person? Do you care for this person? Would you do anything for this person? And if that answer is yes, then they are your family.”

After the interviews, I looked at the film in a whole new light. It is not just an action superhero film, but a story about acceptance, friendship, and family. Don’t miss bringing your children to see Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 in theaters this Friday, May 5th. Learn more about Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 online, Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.

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