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What Will Groot Look Like In Guardians Of The Galaxy Vol. 3?

Marvel's "Guardians of the Galaxy" franchise has become one of the best things about the MCU over the years, with unique characters like Dave Bautista's Drax the (deadpan) Destroyer and Vin Diesel's sentient super-tree Groot – and then his son, Baby Groot, who grew up into Teen Groot — becoming major fan-favorites. While we already know Drax's ultimate future in the MCU will close out in the next film, it appears that only James Gunn and the rest of the "Guardians" gang know what lies ahead for Diesel, Chris Pratt, Zoe Saldaña, Bradley Cooper, Karen Gillan, Pom Klementieff, and all of the other cosmic figures that the Guardians mingle with. 

As with any Guardians-involved project, one of the biggest questions on everybody's minds is what form Groot could be taking on in the group's next big movie, "Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3," since one would assume he'll have grown up (at least a bit) by the time the film arrives. Interestingly, some people believe the answer could be hidden on social media.

With a current release date of May 5, 2023, "Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3" is still a long way away for fans right now. So many have been looking to upcoming appearances in "Thor: Love and Thunder" and "The Guardians of the Galaxy Holiday Special" for clues as to what Groot could be looking and acting like in the next standalone film. And back in April, someone claimed to have found one...

Guardians Holiday Special merch teases a very buff Groot

It stands to reason that when this current incarnation Groot ages into an adult, he won't just look identical to his father. Where would be the fun in that? And in fact, one clue points toward an intriguing twist with the younger Groot's adult appearance.

On April 25, 2022, James Gunn took to his Twitter account to publicly thank Marvel Studios after they sent him a gift set of ornaments showing characters from "The Guardians of the Galaxy Holiday Special." Fans looked closely at the ornaments (as reported by Inverse) and noted that one of them shows a much more mature young Groot — who is now looking notably buffer than the old Groot did, following yet another apparent growth spurt. He's also adorned with colorful lights like a Christmas tree ... but it is a holiday special, after all (and he is a tree).

"They grow up so fast," joked @OccupyArkham in Gunn's reply section, garnering over 150 likes. 

"Beefcake Groot?" tweeted @LinkinPrime

Back in March, Vin Diesel told USA Today that fans would be getting a much different version of Groot in the future, with him describing exactly what moviegoers would be in for when they next see the character. In Diesel's words, "The Groot that we're going to is Alpha Groot. You're gonna lose your mind when you see Alpha Groot." Could the version of Groot we see on Gunn's ornaments be what we ultimately get as the character's final form? Only time — perhaps as soon as "Thor: Love and Thunder" — will tell.