At the moment, Guardians of the Galaxy has grossed $313 million worldwide only two weeks after its initial release. The superhero movie is an unabashed hit and proves that Marvel can sell general audiences just about anything from their deep bench of superheroes. With recent announcements of untitled Marvel movie release dates, the comic book movie studio is fully planning out Phase Three (and maybe Phase Four) of the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Marvel is an unstoppable juggernaut (no pun intended) and the future looks bright for the movie studio and their latest hit characters, the Guardians of the Galaxy.
With the recent success of the new movie, could Marvel spin-off its cosmic team into future standalone movies? While the movie was an origin story of the team itself, we got hints of the characters featured in the film such as Star-Lord's father and Gamora and Drax the Destroyer's past. Would you want to see a standalone movie featuring Star-Lord? Would you want to see on-going adventures of Gamora? Or why Rocket and Groot are such good friends?
In a way, Marvel could make standalone movie featuring the individual [Guardians of the Galaxy](movie:424073). These movies could be prequels before the events that took place in Marvel's latest movie. We could see a movie featuring Gamora working as a trained and lethal assassin. We could see another featuring Star-Lord in adventures with Yondu Udonta and his space pirate crew. We could also see another movie that features how Rocket Raccoon became the subject for horrific scientific experimentations. The possibilities are really endless and since Marvel can virtually sell anything to general audiences, these new would-be movies might be profitable. The bigger question is: how would standalone Guardians of the Galaxy movies propel the overall larger story of the Marvel Cinematic Universe?
The truth is it wouldn't. Marvel is very tactful when it comes to new movies and sequels and how everything fits together as a whole. They're even willing to part ways with a wonderful director like Edgar Wright if their vision doesn't line up with the overall bigger picture. For Marvel, it seems that it’s more important to tell entertaining stories that fit into its brand than to cater to director's whims, especially if they're not part of the Marvel brand. Standalone Guardians of the Galaxy movies, especially prequels, wouldn't advance the larger story of Thanos and the Infinity Gauntlet established in the tail end of Phase One, Phase Two, and Phase Three.
That being said, I could see Marvel telling prequel stories and expanded character-driven tales in Marvel One-Shot short films. This is a series of short films that are fun, little one-offs that continue to tell stories that take place in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. They can range from the fun and silly Item 47, where two people find Chitauri technology after the invasion in [The Avengers](movie:9040) and use them for bank robberies, to story expanding shorts such as Agent Carter, which follows Peggy Carter after the events of Captain America: The First Avenger and how she help to establish S.H.I.E.L.D. I could see a future Marvel One-Shot that features Star-Lord, Gamora, Drax the Destroyer, Rocket Raccoon, and Groot in standalone situations and stories. The most important thing about these Marvel One-Shots is that they're canon to the Marvel Cinematic Universe.
While it's unclear if Marvel designed Guardians of the Galaxy for standalone feature films, it is clear that audiences and fans love Marvel's new cosmic team. There are rumors that the Guardians of the Galaxy will eventually meet up with [The Avengers](movie:9040) later in Phase Three (just imagine what it would be like if Tony Stark met Peter Quill), while a new sequel film is currently in the works for July 2017. Rest assured Marvel fans, we're going to get more Guardians of the Galaxy, but not in any solo movies, unfortunately.