While he made his MCU debut as a Kyln inmate in 2014's Guardians of the Galaxy, it was rumored that Nathan Fillion would have a much larger role in this year's Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2. Photos from the set featured posters of the actor portraying Simon Williams, causing fans to speculate that Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 would mark Wonder Man's entry into the MCU.
That didn't happen. The background posters of Fillion as Simon Williams were James Gunn Easter eggs, and they were left on the cutting room floor, simply because they slowed the down the action.
So ultimately, Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 didn't feature an extended role for Nathan Fillion, but is that the end of it? James Gunn says it's not, posting a new Instagram pic of a poster for a Tony Stark biopic with Simon Williams as a main character. The director also said that these posters can be considered canon in the MCU, and that he hopes that Simon Williams will soon make an actual appearance in the shared universe.
As many of you know one of my best friends in the world is @natefillion . Along with Michael Rooker and Gregg Henry he's been in every movie I've directed – even as a monstrous, perverted voice in Guardians of the Galaxy. I didn't have a good cameo for him in Vol. 2 – and I wanted to bring him more fully into the MCU at some point, so I didn't want to make him Aakon Guard #2, narrowing his chance of a more substantial role in the future. I really do love the character of Simon Williams/Wonder Man in the comics – a sometimes douchey actor/superhero – and could see Nathan clearly in that role (not because he's a douchebag but because he's great at playing one). But, of course, in a movie set 99.9% in space I didn't really have a place for him. So in a small flash to earth I decided to put a theater playing a "Simon Williams Film Festival," with six Simon Williams movie posters outside. Obviously, from the posters, he's had a run of B movies. Most of them in themselves are Easter eggs of some sort or another. Unfortunately, the small section of the scene where they appeared slowed down the movie and I had to cut the Easter eggs from the film (along with storefronts named after comic book luminaries Starlin, Mantlos, Annett and others). Equally a bummer was that a lot of people took photos of these posters on the day so suddenly every fan site was reporting that Nathan was playing Wonder Man in he movie. He was even the third-billed actor on IMDB! So that's the full story. Nathan's only cameo in the movie ever were these posters. I'll post them all over the next few days. And, yes, I think we can consider them canon for the MCU, and I hold onto hope that Simon Williams will rise again!! #guardiansofthegalaxyvol2 #gotgvol2 #GotGPicoftheDay #nathanfillion
When exactly will that happen? Well, if James Gunn doesn't know, nobody does!