Disney+'s Guardians of the Galaxy Holiday Special: James Gunn Confirms Whether It's MCU Phase 4 or 5

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Fact: Phase 4 of the MCU ends with Black Panther: Wakanda Forever (in theaters Nov. 11), and Phase 5 begins with Ant-Man 3 (out Feb. 17, 2023).

Fact: Disney+‘s Guardians of the Galaxy Holiday Special lands somewhere in between,coming out this December.

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So, to which phase does the Guardians special belong…?

First announced in December 2020 and written/directed by franchise vet James Gunn, The Guardians of the Galaxy Holiday Special takes place after the events of Thor: Love and Thunder (now playing) but before the events of Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3 (hitting theaters May 5, 2023).

Having filmed the special concurrently with Vol. 3, erstwhile Guardians Chris Pratt, Zoe Saldaña, Dave Bautista, Vin Diesel, Bradley Cooper, Karen Gillan and Pom Klementieff all reprise their respective film roles, as Peter Quill/Star-Lord, Gamora, Drax the Destroyer, Groot, Rocket, Nebula and Mantis.

The roughly 40-minute lark has been described by Gunn as “crazy and fun as can be,” and the storyline reportedly will include a trip to Groot’s home world, Planet X.

And regarding its December premiere relative to the recently delineated MCU phases, Gunn this week confirmed on Twitter, “the Guardians Holiday Special is the epilogue of Phase 4.” He also reiterated that the special is a “must watch” ahead of the third Guardians film.

“Absolutely,” he assured a fan. “There’s a lot of big information in there.”

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