The cosmic side of the Marvel Cinematic Universe is closely associated with the Guardians of the Galaxy, but Thor: Ragnarok plants that franchise squarely in space-faring territory. While the characters will team up in next year's Avengers: Infinity War (as seen in teaser footage screened earlier this year), Marvel Studios has been quietly laying the seeds for a crossover between the two franchises, with Thor's third solo film featuring many connections between the God of Thunder and the Guardians.
A video presented by Screen Rant on the Regal Cinemas Facebook page runs down the list of connections between the two Guardians of the Galaxy movies and Thor: Ragnarok, and there's quite a few. First up is the Grandmaster, who rules over the planet Sakaar -- affectionately called the "garbage dump of the universe" -- where Thor is forced to fight his Avenger teammate Hulk in the Contest of Champions. The Grandmaster is an Elder of the Universe and a space hoarder, just like his brother the Collector, played by Benicio del Toro in the first Guardians of the Galaxy film.
More connections include Sakaar soldiers battling the Guardians in the first GOTG film, their spaceship the Milano seen among the pile of junk on Sakaar in Thor: Ragnarok concept art and the demon Surtur appearing in both Thor: Ragnarok and Disney California Adventure's "Guardians of the Galaxy – Mission: Breakout!" attraction.
Debuting Friday, Nov. 3 in North American theaters and directed by Taika Waititi, Thor: Ragnarok stars Chris Hemsworth as Thor, Tom Hiddleston as Loki, Cate Blanchett as Hela, Idris Elba as Heimdall, Jeff Goldblum as Grandmaster, Tessa Thompson as Valkyrie, Karl Urban as Skurge, Mark Ruffalo as Bruce Banner/Hulk and Anthony Hopkins as Odin.