During some jib-jab with The Hollywood Reporter, Vin Diesel who is out promoting his upcoming film, Riddick, gave some info on just how much of himself will be put into bringing Groot (learn all about him here) to the screen in Guardians of the Galaxy and let slip that the original meeting he had with Marvel wasn't over GotG but another, as yet unannounced Phase 3 film!
As it turns out Marvel had their eye on Diesel for a film that was to be released in either 2016 or 2017 (there are 3 untitled films with release dates in 2016 and 2017) but after attending SDCC '13, the action star says he realized the fans wanted him in the MCU now, if not sooner. Because of his busy upcoming slate, Diesel said, "it was almost impossible to imagine I could do anything immediate," but apparently some quick thinking by Marvel led to the gravel-voiced action star becoming the favorite to land the role of Groot. The actor also revealed that he will be providing some motion-capture for Groot who, being a tree and not always being in one piece, doesn't do a whole lot of fast-twitch movements.
As for the Phase 3 film, speculation has centered on an Inhumans piece for sometime and there were rumors that Diesel had been approached by Marvel for the role of Black Bolt, king of the Inhumans with a voice so powerful that it's slightest whisper could level mountains. Many have argued that a mostly mute main character would never work but I've long thought that the way around that is to have the film narrated from Black Bolt's POV as a personal reflection on something that happened in the past. With an Indestructible Hulk movie a high-likelihood, a Black Panther movie rumored to be filming in 2014 and Doctor Strange all but a certainty for Phase 3, Marvel Studios is left with 1 spot to fill to complete the phase (Ant-Man is thought to be the beginning Phase 3). It would seem that Marvel is attempting to expand their Cosmic universe and it would make sense that they'd use that remaining spot on something Cosmic. My money would be on Nova, but I would LOVE to see the Inhumans done justice on the screen. They are about to figure prominently into Marvel comics again and Marvel has recently owned up to the fact that some of the things they are doing in the comics are prepping fans for the films.
Either way, it's a nice interview and it's good to know we'll be hearing more news on this and other Marvel projects soon. Check back for updates and don't forget to join the mailing list so you can get them first!!