Over the last year, filming on major productions has been a questionable process, considering the number of people needed together in a confined space. But through the technology known as StageCraft from Lucasfilm, shows like The Mandalorian have been able to continue filming with small crews. Now, it looks as though Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3 plans to use this technology as well.
When asked on Twitter if the upcoming Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3 would use StageCraft, writer and director James Gunn replied, “Yes, some. where it fits.” Previously, Taika Waititi has also said that he will use the technology for Thor: Love and Thunder as well. Considering that Waititi is also working on his own Star Wars film, and since The Mandalorian already uses the StageCraft technology, it seems safe to assume that both Marvel and Lucasfilm will utilize this technology in the future.
StageCraft is called a virtual production filmmaking platform, which essentially means that through LED screens, a production can capture visual effects within a scene, instead of adding them later. The technology was made by Industrial Light & Magic and Epic Games, and helps create digital landscapes and sets that are photo-real during filming. For a production like Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3, which features not only grandiose space locations, but completely animated characters like Rocket and Groot, this kind of technology could be greatly beneficial.
But considering James Gunn seems to have an affinity for practical effects like in Slither and the upcoming The Suicide Squad, it seems as though Gunn would probably be sparing when it comes to using this technology for Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3. However, it does seem like Disney would probably like to use this technology for more and more of their productions. For example, over half of The Mandalorian’s first season was filmed using the StageCraft technology. With many theaters still closed and Disney’s productions usually costing hundreds of millions of dollars, StageCraft seems like a way to not only minimize the number of people needed on set, but also a way for Disney to cut costs.
As of right now, there are only four StageCraft sets in the world, two in Los Angeles, one in Australia, and one in the U.K. This makes sense, considering Thor: Love and Thunder is currently filming in Australia, and presumably Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3 will use the Los Angeles set. Plus, considering that the Guardians of the Galaxy cast will be appearing in Thor: Love and Thunder, they will likely be used to the technology by the time James Gunn starts filming the third installment.
But presently, James Gunn is deep into his work in the DC Universe. Gunn is currently filming Peacemaker, a spinoff of The Suicide Squad starring John Cena for HBO Max. Gunn has also finished filming The Suicide Squad, which is scheduled for release on August 6th through theaters and HBO Max. Considering Gunn is considerably busy with the DC Universe, it looks as though Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3 won’t start filming until late 2021, with a theoretical release date of 2023.