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GOTG_Payoff_1-ShtA few weeks ago those in the know would have told you Marvel’s “Guardians of the Galaxy” had a tough road ahead of it. It had unknown characters, an unproven lead actor, a director best known for films that are kind of out there, and was opening in an already dreary summer as far as box office goes. A Marvel film without super heroes? Who would go see it?

Turns out, just about everyone. Early estimates for the weekend show James Gunn’s space opera ringing in $94 million in space credits. That’s a new record for August openings. That’s freakin’ fantastic. The Global Box Office is now over $160 Million already. Not too shabby.

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During Marvel’s animation panel at SDCC’14, creative director Eric Radomski was discussing the inclusion of the Guardians of the Galaxy characters in upcoming episodes of all of Marvel’s animated series, when it was revealed the Guardians would soon be getting their own animated series.

This was followed by a 1-minute teaser of the show, featuring a scene with Rocket and Starlord.

No date was released for the series start, but it will air on the Disney XD channel, with other Marvel series like “Ultimate Spider-Man,” “Hulk and the Agents of S.M.A.S.H.,” and “Avengers Assemble.”

You can watch the full Marvel animation panel online here:

For the last few weeks, I’ve been following Guardians of The Galaxy Director @jamesgunn on Twitter and as well as on Facebook. It’s been one series after another of great posts, behind the scenes photos, and a rare glimpse as a Director rises to whatever level super stars achieve in Hollywood. Yes, Guardians of the Galaxy is that good.

In an early profile FilmJournal interviewed Gunn about what it was like as he was competing for the director’s chair

“The more I talked about it, the more excited I got. I saw the opportunity to do the exact movie I’d always wanted to do and never thought I’d have the chance—a space opera. As we talked, I could see visually what I would do with the movie, like bringing back some of the colorful palettes of sci-fi movies like Forbidden Planet and Fantastic Voyage. So I threw my hat in the ring. At first it was me against five other directors; then it was me against three other directors; then it was me against one other director; and then it was just me.”

and on the challenges of creating a whole corner of the galaxy from the ground up

“On a normal movie, you’d set a scene in a kitchen and then go to the production designer and he’d say, ‘We can use this toaster or this toaster or this toaster.’ In this movie, if the characters are going to have toast, you’ve got to figure out how the process works. Are there toasters? Are they in the wall? You’re really creating everything from the ground up and I felt like I had a lot of freedom to create the universe I wanted.”

It really is a great interview, read the whole thing.

Another recent profile on Gunn was in the Los Angeles Times. Gunn talks about more about how much he’s enjoyed working on the project