By the time the credits roll on Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2, the pieces have to be in place for the the Guardians to meet the Avengers. We know this because the casting announcement for Avengers: Infinity War has them on the list. We also know that James Gunn has promised Sylvester Stallone will have a vital — if small — part to play in GotG2. According to those who saw the footage at San Diego Comic-Con last year, Stallone was in Nova Corps gear but Gunn has hinted looks can be deceiving.
All this is to say, no one knows for sure if Stallone will be playing the iconic character of Nova or someone else. But James Gunn may have dropped a clue when he recently went on The Adam Carolla Show. During the podcast, Gunn revealed actor Michael Rosenbaum (Smallville) also has a small but important part to play in the Guardians sequel.
“We have a couple of characters in the movie who are very important to the Marvel universe who are going to make their debut in Guardians Vol. 2, which people don’t know about. Sylvester Stallone plays one of these characters […] and my friend Michael Rosenbaum also has a pretty decent role in the movie as well. And [he] sort of works in tandem with [Stallone’s] character.”
Gunn goes on to joke that while that tidbit doesn’t seem like much, it won’t take long until the comic book news sites pick it up. Touché, sir.
What’s interesting is Rosenbaum’s role was kept so hidden, it isn’t even on as of this writing. Without even a rudimentary clue, fans are left to wild speculation. The obvious answer would be that Stallone is playing dying Nova Corps member Rhomann Dey he bequeaths his powers to Rosenbaum, who would be taking on the role of Nova, one of Marvel’s premiere defenders of the galaxy and ally of the Guardians.
But it’s possible Stallone’s dressed in a Nova Corps uniform is a red herring. After all, you don’t hire Rambo only to kill him off, do you? But what other character would need this kind of gravitas? Perhaps, I don’t know, Thanos’ dad?