Warning: this list contains Avengers: Infinity War spoilers.
Though it's slated for a 2020 release date, Guardians Of The Galaxy Vol. 3 theories are already popping up online. These Guardians sequel theories tie in with the already overwhelming amount of Infinity War Part 2 predictions, most of which try to make sense of a post-Snap universe.
However, with Avengers 4 scheduled to come out in 2019 (before GotG Vol. 3) most fans reckon there's a high chance some of Infinity War's deaths may be less than permanent. Some audience members are still trying to grapple with Star-Lord's defining moment in Infinity War and how it will affect GotG 3. Others have started speculating what new Marvel characters will join the fray.
Director James Gunn has given some hints on social media to diehard fans as to the film's plot, but what will happen in Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3 is still anyone's guess.
Star-Lord, Mantis, And Drax Will Be Back
With everyone except for Rocket Raccoon and Nebula dusted by the gauntlet-wearing hand of Thanos in Avengers: Infinity War, it seems inconceivable that another Guardians movie can happen. But, while the permanent fates of most of Thanos's victims remain unknown, three of the Guardians are already confirmed to be returning in some form or another.
Chris Pratt revealed to MTV International that the third installment of Guardians of the Galaxy would begin filming in January 2019, proving his involvement. Dave Bautista also went on record about Drax's mysterious resurrection for the film:
I'm gonna be in Guardians 3. I don't know how they're bringing me back, yeah but somehow I'm going to make it because, as far as I know, I am going to be in Guardians 3, so I have to be back.
Meanwhile, Mantis's return was accidentally-on-purpose spoiled by James Gunn on Twitter.10214Is this plausible?
We'll Learn More About Rocket Raccoon's Backstory
Rocket Raccoon's backstory has remained a complete mystery so far. He's vaguely alluded to being a product of a dodgy science experiment with outbursts like, "I didn't ask to get made!" His snarly, quick-temper also hints at a more feral prehistory, something that James Gunn revealed at Hasbro HASCON 2017 will be addressed in future installments:
We are going to learn more about where Rocket comes from in the coming sagas. It’s going to be a little different from the comics. We already know a lot about from where he came from. It’s a little bit more horrible than what it is in the comics when you come down to it. We will learn more about that.
This strongly points to Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3 finally pulling some of the mystery surrounding the fan-favorite character to rest, though Gunn's use of the word "sagas" also hints the reveal may be saved for a spinoff movie.10419Is this plausible?
Adam Warlock Will Return
After his existence was teased at the very end of Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2, Adam Warlock was hotly tipped to show up in Avengers: Infinity War to thwart Thanos. Unfortunately for half the universe, that didn't happen. According to the Russo brothers, Warlock won't be gracing the MCU with his golden presence in Avengers 4, either.
By the process of elimination, it only makes sense that if he's ever going to show up again, it'll be in Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3, as Redditor /u/2chainzrules24_2 points out:
This film is set to take place after [the] Untitled Avengers [film] and will probably deal with the fallout of losing Gamora in Infinity War. The film will probably feature Adam Warlock as an antagonist at first before he becomes a hero and joins the team. It's possible that Adam Warlock will have some connection to a soul realm where Peter would be able to see Gamora again, but that might seem a little forced and might not make a lot of sense.858Is this plausible?
Mantis Will Have A Higher PurposePhoto: Avengers #123/Marvel Comics
After the release of Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 – which fleshes out Peter Quill's true parentage and cosmic abilities as Ego the Living Planet's offspring – a fan theory positing that Mantis, Ego's right-hand woman, was also his progeny gained a lot of traction. This was based on evidence in the film that Ego had coupled with a member of Mantis' species, which James Gunn confirmed on Instagram.
But, in doing so, the director also debunked the idea that Mantis is secretly Peter's half-sister. Since Gunn confirmed on Twitter that Mantis will be in Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3, theorizing on the future role she'll play is still viable.
The only clue so far is a throwaway reference to "Cotati steel" in Avengers: Infinity War. This Infinity War Easter egg hints at the identity Mantis takes on in the comics as the Celestial Madonna –"the essence of life" – a prophecy rooted in the culture of the Cotati race.6219Is this plausible?