Earlier today, James Gunn and Vin Diesel both shared the below picture via their Facebook and Twitter accounts respectively. This fueled the unconfirmed reports that Vin Diesel would indeed be lending his powerful voice to the vocabulary-challenged, sentient tree alien in next year’s GUARDIANS OF THE GALAXY.
While this had been pretty much a forgone conclusion, there was still no official word and while today’s posts seemed to confirm what the internet supposedly already knew, Diesel’s casting was still the only one that had not been announced by Marvel nor included in the official synopsis. This secrecy was leading many to think that those involved (director James Gunn, Marvel Head Honcho Kevin Feige and Diesel himself) were pulling the wool over our eyes and that Vin was in fact voicing the universe’s biggest baddie, Thanos (the smiling purple guy from the end of THE AVENGERS)
Well, speculate no more. Marvel has made it official and released the following press release:
Vin Diesel is Groot!
The star of the Fast and the Furious and Riddick franchises will lend his voice to Groot in Marvel’s live-action “Guardians of the Galaxy,” rounding out the team that includes Star-Lord (Chris Pratt), Rocket Raccoon (Bradley Cooper), Gamora (Zoe Saldana) and Drax (Dave Bautista).
Featured in four of the six movies in the fan-favorite “Fast & Furious” franchise, Diesel has helped the series gross over $2 billion at the box office; and will reprise his role in “Fast & Furious 7.” Diesel’s most recent film, “Riddick,” the third film in the franchise that has so far earned a cumulative $267.3 million across the globe, debuted this year at the top of the box office. In addition to lending his voice to several video games, Diesel’s received great acclaim for his voice work in the celebrated animated film “The Iron Giant,” directed by Brad Bird.
In the far reaches of the Marvel Cinematic Universe, an unlikely cast of characters including Peter Quill, Gamora, Drax, Groot and Rocket Raccoon must join forces to defeat a cosmic force of epic proportions. Directed by James Gunn, the live-action “Guardians of the Galaxy” will take fans to new corners of the Marvel Universe when it hits theaters August 1, 2014, but in the meantime stay tuned to Marvel.com for the latest news as it breaks, including official casting, first looks and more!
In addition to “Guardians of the Galaxy,” Marvel Studios will release a slate of films based on the Marvel characters including “Captain America: The Winter Soldier” on April 4, 2014; “Avengers: Age of Ultron” on May 1, 2015; and “Ant-Man” on July 31, 2015.
So there you go. Vin has done some amazing voice acting in the past, most notably as the titular character in THE IRON GIANT. Coincidentally, that job also dealt with a character who did not have a full vocabulary or range of vocal expression, but Vin’s performance is widely considered excellent and extremely heartfelt, especially considering the limitations of the part. Groot is a character who, in the comics, says only the words “I AM GROOT” leading many to believe that he has communication issues, however, his language is so complex that most beings cannot distinguish between different words and so our ears only hear what sounds like him saying “I AM GROOT” in different intonations. It should be interesting to see how this is brought to the big screen.
It is really funny when you think about it. DC and Warner Bros have yet to bring many of the big names to the silver screen like Flash, Aquaman and Wonder Woman (granted she will FINALLY be coming in 2015 in the MAN OF STEEL sequel) yet Marvel is already delving so deep into their universe that they are putting a sentient tree and a talking raccoon on film. Think about that for a minute….
So what do you think of this official announcement? What are your thoughts on the official bust of Groot which director James Gunn said that they used as a reference point for the character during filming?
GUARDIANS OF THE GALAXY (Marvel, Disney) is directed by James Gunn from a script he wrote. The films stars Chris Pratt, Zoe Saldana, Dave Bautista, Lee Pace, Michael Rooker, Karen Gillan, Djimon Hounsou, Benicio del Toro, John C. Reilly, Glenn Close, Gregg Henry, Bradley Cooper and Vin Diesel.
SYNOPSIS: “Guardians of the Galaxy,” based on the Marvel comic books of the same name, features an unlikely cast of characters who must team up in order to defeat a cosmic force of epic proportions.
GUARDIANS OF THE GALAXY is set to hit 2D and 3D theaters on August 1, 2014.