'Guardians of the Galaxy': Karen Gillan Says Nebula Originally Was Supposed to Die

Karen Gillan as Nebula in 'Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2'
Karen Gillan as Nebula in ‘Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2’ (Photo: Marvel)

One of the unexpected breakout characters of 2014’s Guardians of the Galaxy was Nebula, the adopted daughter of big Marvel baddie Thanos and the sister of Zoe Saldana’s heroine Gamora. Thus, writer/director James Gunn has given her an even bigger role to play in the series’ upcoming second installment, Vol. 2 — although according to actress Karen Gillan, who plays the half-organic, half-mechanical quasi-villain, she almost didn’t make it into the sequel, because she was originally slated to perish in the first film.

Speaking to Matt Singer at Screencrush, Gillan revealed that Nebula’s fate was initially quite dire:

I thought, ‘Okay, so that’s going to be it for her,’ at one point. Then suddenly they rewrote her ending — and then they rewrote it again, and I was like, ‘Oh, okay. What’s going on?’ I was really shocked when I got to come back and as part of the team in the next movie. That was amazing! I definitely didn’t expect that.”

Gillan says that she never filmed a death scene, thanks to rewrites during production.

“We never got to that point. As soon as we would get near to it there would be a new script. Oh! There was one different ending that she had where they kept her alive and then we re-shot that as well.”

Rather than looking for ways to dispatch Nebula, Gunn has since gone on to make her a member of the team (in a way) in Vol. 2, which further develops her relationship with Gamora and the rest of the Guardians. That, in turn, sets her up to have a potentially key role in next summer’s Avengers: Infinity War. And as Gunn has previously said (as in the below tweet), he’s also still pondering giving her a solo spin-off at some point.

To read more about Gillan’s preparation for her role as Nebula (including the inspiration for her unique voice), as well as her work on Infinity War — for which she hasn’t even received a full script! — head over to Screencrush. And to see her in action, check out Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 beginning on May 5.

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