The soundtrack for a Guardians of the Galaxy film is almost as highly anticipated as the film itself, a burdon that weighs heavily on the director. “They changed the lives of some of these artists who now have big hit songs,” says writer and director James Gunn. “I know that when I’m choosing a song, it’s going to be something that a lot of people listen to.”
With the arrival of Peter Quill’s Zune at the end of Vol. 2, the music could finally extend beyond Awesome Mixes created by Quill’s mother. “I could choose from anything,” according to Gunn. “It’s like at the end of Hurt Locker, with him looking at all the stuff on the shelves and not knowing how to make this choice.”
Chukwudi Iwuji, who plays the High Evolutionary in Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3, helped introduce classical music into the soundtrack. “The first thing that’s written when you meet him is him listening to Space Opera,” according to Iwuji. “Immediately I knew classical music was gonna be a big part of this character”.
“He’s this mad scientist sort of person, I just thought of someone that doesn’t sleep,” says Iwjui. “He needs the music as he wanders through his castle at night.”
Iwjui prepared for the role by listening to some of his favorite arias, as well as sending some of them to Gunn. The result is “Koinu no Carnival” (From “Minute Waltz”), performed by EHAMIC, finding its way onto the Vol. 3 soundtrack.
“It wasn’t really about specifically how do I play the character written,” continues Iwjui. “It’s how do I bring this guy into the room, because I knew that would be taken care of in the script, the motivations and the moments and stuff are impeccably written… it was about, ‘Who is this guy before he turns up on the set?'” It turns out, he’s someone who listens to opera.
You can hear the full soundtrack for yourself on the big screen. Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3 is in theaters now.