When Guardians of the Galaxy rolled around, plenty of Marvel fans were curious to see if the film would include the character of Adam Warlock. The character is part of the “cosmic universe” of the Marvel comics (as opposed to the Earth-centric stories), and at one point was even a member of the Guardians of the Galaxy. Given Nathan Fillion’s vocal cameo in Guardians, plenty wondered if Adam Warlock was who he’d be playing. As it turns out, Warlock only had a tiny cameo in the first Guardians of the Galaxy as the film showed his cocoon at The Collector’s palace, and he’s not a part of the sequel Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 either. But he used to be.
Speaking with /Film, writer/director James Gunn revealed that Adam Warlock was a major part of Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 in the film’s original treatment:
“I love Adam Warlock. He’s one of my favorite characters. In all truth, I wrote an early treatment where I had Adam Warlock as a part…this is your big scoop, because I don’t think I’ve told anybody this… It was Adam Warlock. He was a big part of the screenplay and I realized it was one character too many. And I adored the character. I adored what we had done with him. I think we did something really creative and unique with Adam Warlock. But it was one character too many and I didn’t want to lose Mantis and Mantis was more organically part of the movie anyway. So I decided to save him for later.”
Gunn previously revealed that the only change he made from the treatment to the finished Guardians 2 script was the removal of a major character, and it sounds like Warlock was it. As for Gunn saving the character “for later”, Marvel Studios president Kevin Feige told /Film that Gunn is developing Adam Warlock to be included “in a future Marvel cosmic universe film,” and Gunn clarified that it’s not Avengers: Infinity War:
“He’s not. He’s not in Infinity War. But he will be a part of the future Marvel cosmic universe and a pretty important part of that.”
It’s pretty safe to assume, then, that Adam Warlock will be a major part of Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3, which Gunn has already committed to writing and directing. Especially since Feige basically told /Film as much.
So there you have it, folks. Don’t go into Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 expecting to see Adam Warlock, but also don’t fret—he’ll probably be in Guardians of the Galaxy 3.