James Gunn's first "Guardians of the Galaxy" was part of the Marvel Cinematic Universe, but it took place in a galaxy far, far away, which means it was largely unburdened by MCU continuity. It seems the same will hold true for "Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2," at least according to Gunn himself.
On Twitter, a fan asked him, "Does maintaining continuity in the MCU interfere at all in the process of making your movie exactly how you want it?"
To which Gunn responded, saying,
I’m so out in space unconnected at this point, outside of Thanos in Vol 1, I’ve never had to deal with even a single moment of continuity. https://t.co/uqgYryh6LO
— James Gunn (@JamesGunn) December 6, 2016
As such, it seems recent events in the MCU -- including the Avengers' "Civil War," Hulk's disappearance and the emergence of Doctor Strange -- won't have much bearing on the events of "Vol. 2." Though Thanos did appear in the first "Guardians" film, his part was nothing more than a glorified cameo; he may have sparked the action with his quest for the Infinity Stones, but the film didn't build off of characters like Captain America, Iron Man or any of the other Avengers.
Opening May 5, “Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2” also stars Chris Pratt, Zoe Saldana, Dave Bautista, Bradley Cooper, Michael Rooker, Karen Gillan, Sean Gunn, Glenn Close, Elizabeth Debicki and Chris Sullivan.