Parks and Recreation star Chris Pratt might be an offbeat choice for any role in a superhero film, let alone the lead role of Peter “Star-Lord” Quill, the leader of Marvel Comics’ intergalactic super-team the Guardians of the Galaxy. But according to director James Gunn, when we see Pratt in the film next summer we’re going to forgo any perception we might have of him.
Gunn explains, “Everybody knows Chris Pratt is in the movie, and I saw maybe 80 to 100 guys read for Peter Quill. I was very specific that I wanted it to be somebody really extraordinary. I really had Robert Downey Jr in mind a lot. You had this guy who came in and he inhabited Tony Stark, when you first saw Tony Stark he blew your mind, you couldn’t believe what you were seeing. I knew that I needed somebody to blow my mind like that.”
He then adds, “We saw a lot of very famous guys for the role, a lot of very well-known people, and very, very good actors. We saw a lot of good performances, but it wasn’t until Chris came in and he read and I was like, ‘oh my God,’ this guy has his own, very particular, amazing take on the character that blew my mind, blew me away. Then I thought, this is the first guy I could see sharing the screen with Robert Downey Jr and giving him a run for his money.”