Dave Bautista had already appeared in a few movies before Guardians of the Galaxy was released in 2014, but the wrestler's first outing as Drax the Destroyer best demonstrated his acting abilities. Following the first movie's critical and commercial success, Bautista and his most of his costars are back three years later for Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2, and the movie has been earning a lot of positive reviews. However, when Bautista first read through the sequel's script, he didn't particularly care for it, believing that Drax wasn't as prominent or funny as he was in the first Guardians of the Galaxy movie. He explained:
I was excited about the script, [but] when I first read the script, I wasn't crazy about my part. It went a different direction than what I thought they were going to go with Drax. That's just because I was expecting one thing and got another. So I was a little bit thrown off at first. Also, what I usually do when I get a script is I read my dialogue first, I just didn't really get the jokes. I just didn't think Drax was that significant in the film, and I don't find myself funny at all. So I remember reading, and I'm just sitting there not laughing. Like, wow, it was disappointing because I thought Drax was going to be so much more.
It was only when Dave Bautista attended the table reading of Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 that he changed his mind about the script. Hearing the other actors read their lines, as well as reading his own lines out loud in a group, helped the actor realize Drax's importance and understand the overall story better. Bautista also informed Comic Book Resources that actress Pom Klementieff's addition as Mantis did wonders in bringing him on board with how Drax was being used in Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2. He continued:
We knew right away on the screen test, because I screen tested with three or four other actresses, and Pom was the one who I just connected with emotionally. Like me, she just wears her heart on her sleeve, and she's just got that emotional range. She also has a knack of being able to deliver a joke in a deadpan manner. She's got the same knack. It just meshed well together.
Previous reports have indicated that Drax and Mantis will share a special connection in Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2, and we already know from the movie's December trailer that the Destroyer gets a kick out of the empathic alien's abilities, so it sounds like we can expect some great chemistry between Dave Bautista and Pom Klementieff. Also keep in mind that we'll be seeing more of these two, as well as most of the other Guardians, next year when they return for Avengers: Infinity War.
Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 opens in theaters across the U.S. this Friday, May 5. Before that happens, don't forget to read our review of the movie.