James Gunn Shares How the Guardians Holiday Special Began With Kevin Bacon

James Gunn Shares How the Guardians Holiday Special Began With Kevin Bacon

Footloose left an indelible impression on Peter Quill/Star-Lord before he was abducted from Earth in the late ‘80s. But next week, the cosmic outlaw will return the favor when his teammates capture the film’s lead actor in The Guardians of the Galaxy Holiday Special on Disney+. Viewers got a preview of Kevin Bacon’s highly-anticipated cameo when the special’s first trailer dropped last month. And while speaking with The Hollywood Reporter, director James Gunn explained how this idea made the writing process a lot easier.

“Well, the germ of the idea was just doing a holiday special,” said Gunn. “I love the holidays and I love Christmas cookies and I love getting together with my family and giving presents to each other. It’s my favorite time of the year. When I was a kid, I loved the Star Wars Holiday Special, but I also loved Rudolph, the Red-Nosed Reindeer. I still think [How the Grinch Stole Christmas!] is one of the greatest cartoons of all time.”

“So the idea of doing a holiday special with the Guardians was both a really funny idea to me and also something I really wanted to do,” continued Gunn. “And once I sat down and started trying to figure out what the story was, the Kevin Bacon idea came up very, very quickly, and I wrote the whole story within a few hours.”

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Gunn added that Bacon was very receptive to the “Introducing Kevin Bacon” gag in the opening credits, claiming that he “lost it” upon seeing the trailer for the first time. However, the Footloose star isn’t the special’s only celebrity cameo. The members of Gunn’s favorite band, The Old 97’s, also appear as an alien musical group that even performs a new Christmas song co-written by Gunn himself. But if Bacon wasn’t available, the special could have had another musical guest as well.

“Peter Quill was pretty young when he left Earth, so I’m not sure how much awareness he had,” added Gunn. “When I was eight, I knew who The Monkees were, but I don’t know who would’ve been famous in 1987 that Peter would’ve loved when he was still on Earth. MC Hammer, maybe.”

The Guardians of the Galaxy Holiday Special will air on Disney+ next Friday, November 25.

Are you looking forward to Bacon’s cameo? Let us know in the comment section below!

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