Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 came out last year. It was a pretty solid sequel that just so happened to deliver on the mystery behind Peter Quill’s Father. Star-Lord is the product of his human Mother and an entity known as Ego the living planet. In the film, Ego is played by Kurt Russell who’s unsurprisingly fantastic opposite Chris Pratt as Star-Lord. The James Gunn film was a solid success and continuation of the Guardians franchise.
On Ego’s planet there was really only one other inhabitant. A telepath by the name of Mantis, played by Pom Klementieff. The character gave Ego peace of mind, and allowed him the only sleep he could have. She ultimately became a major force in helping the Guardians face the massive entity. Now, she’s a full-fledged member of the team. One of many heroes who might fall to Thanos in Infinity War.
Mantis’ design looked very different from what we actually saw on screen. Concept artist Jerad S. Marantz revealed his early designs for Mantis:
A little more exotic than the final design. This looks a little more ridiculous. Mantis would be much more susceptible to Drax’s jokes about her ugliness if she was completely green.
Like Mantis, Ego had his own alternate designs and they are…something else.
A Different kind of “Father Figure”
The designs for Ego are as exotic as the plants on his home planet. According to the designer, this was meant to display how the character is always “connected” to the planet.
Early #psychedelic #Ego concept for #gotg2 . Had a great time working on this project early on. I wasn’t on the show very long but its always fun working with the team at #marvel visual development and project lead @andyparkart . This was in early idea showing the Ego was always connected somehow to the planet. #marvelmovies #marvelcinematicuniverse #marvel #photoshop #zbrush #conceptart #comicbookmovie #badguy #
Definitely “psychedelic.” But this next example? It’s nearly demonic.
This design clearly plays into the more evil motivations of the character. The most important thing to note was that most of these designs were done before the character’s final “representation” in the film was realized. After a while, James Gunn likely realized the character would be much better suited to an actor who could empathize with Star-Lord. Who could seem like the father that Peter Quill wants so badly.
Instead, Ego wanted nothing more than to rob Quill of his life force to spread his own existence.
Typical bad dad.
It’s always great to peer into the unknown and what-ifs of the film world. Thousands of concept artists like Marantz spend countless hours on designs that are never used. Despite the fact that, like the above, they can be more creative than the final product.
Look for Star-Lord and his Guardians to join the Avengers on May 4th in Avengers: Infinity War.