Guardians of the Galaxy (2014) The Collector (Benicio Del Toro)
Benicio Del Toro will be playing "The Collector" in upcoming Marvel films. But who is "The Collector" and what's his importance to the Marvel Cinematic Universe?

In a recent interview Benicio Del Toro talked about playing the Guardians of the Galaxy character, "When someone calls you and says ‘I need you in my movie’, it’s exciting. I like comic-book movies, and it’s totally new for me. My character is The Collector, I’ve never heard of him so I just started some researches about him... A blockbuster can be really tiring to do, but it’s fun to shoot one occasionally. You have many people around you who bombard you with many information… You can not go wrong."

So, he's aware of the power of superhero action films.

Here's everything you need to know about The Collector Marvel character.

The Collector's History
The Collector Marvel Comics character was created by Stan Lee and Don Heck and first appeared in Avengers #28 (May 1966). His real name is Taneleer Tivan and is one of the "Elders of the Universe." The Elders are the first of the universe's races to become sentient in the wake of the "Big Bang."

The Tragedy of The Collector
The Collector lived on an unknown world for millions of years in thought and contemplation with his wife, Matani, and daughter, Carina Walters.
After Carina grew up and left, The Collector's wife died of mysterious causes. The Collector was confused because he believed them to be immortal. He realized that she had lost the will to live and decided that he needed a goal to keep him alive and maintain his sanity.

In a vision, he saw the end of the universe by one man: Thanos the Mad Titan. He began collecting life forms from around the universe to preserve them and rebuild the Universe. Over time his collection of artifacts and life forms became so large that he created zoos and museums out of uninhabited worlds. The original goal of preserving life eventually became a goal to collect anything he considered rare and valuable and he became a vast collector of items from throughout time and space.

The Power of The Collector
He can see brief visions of alternate futures and, with enough time and meditation, identify individuals he sees in his visions and the timing of events.

The Collector is an alien and uses his limited shape-changing abilities to appear like an old man. He has some control of "cosmic energy" and can manipulate it to create energy blasts.

His collection of items has given him a vast arsenal of weapons and technology from throughout time and space. The Collector wears a suit of futuristic armor and uses advanced weapons. He sometimes uses his zoo of alien beasts to attack his enemies.

At one point, he unknowingly possessed a Infinity Gem from his travels, but it was taken by Thanos.

How The Collector Fits in the Marvel Movies
All of this is The Collector's history from the Marvel comics, and we don't know how much will be used. But here's what we do know.

Director James Gunn has kept security tight on what his characters role is. Even Del Toro doesn't know exactly what he's supposed to do. He described on shoot for Guardians of the Galaxy saying, "For example they told you ‘Now you have to go in this restaurant and kill this person.’ And then you ask: ‘Who? The blue haired girl, or the guy with the wig? ‘And you don’t get the answer. And suddenly, you heard ‘Action!’. And you have to go along: so you shoot everywhere and they’ll find a solution for the final cut."

Will he play a villain or a hero? The character has been both in the comics. He tried to kidnap members of the Avengers like Thor and he's tried to save the universe. So it could go either way.

He has strong connections to Thanos, the alien who appears in the post-credits scene of Marvel's The Avengers (2013), who is supposed to be a pivotal character in upcoming movies. Considering he has a vision of Thanos' destruction of the universe, he could be the connection to the Mad Titan's plans. Besides being in the possession of one of the Infinity Gems that Thanos is looking for, he was given true immortality by the character "Death" who Thanos is in love with.

The Collector's daughter Carina Walters may appear in Guardians of the Galaxy. British actor Ophelia Lovibond has been cast as a character only described as someone who "aides" The Collector.

We know The Collector appears in Thor: The Dark World thanks to a (probably) unwitting remark by Clive Russell who said he filmed a scene with Benicio Del Toro where he's "meant to be quite angry." He's probably in the post-credits scene of Thor 2 leading to Guardians of the Galaxy.

Did you learn anything about The Collector? How do you think he fits in with the Marvel Cinematic Universe?

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Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

It will be interesting to see which side of the coin he appears.


I hadn't heard about his appearance in the new Thor movie. Makes sense to tie it together for continuity.

Yolanda Renee said...

Had not heard of the collector, but love the premise of a maybe/maybe not villain. Just the type of guy a girl falls head over heels for - but then finds out he's really a villain - at least at love! Truly enjoy learning the background for these comic book / movies, maybe one day I'll even beat the hubby at trivia! :)

Gina said...

This sounds pretty interesting!


MPax said...

I wonder if I called an actor and said I need you in my movie if that'll work. Sounds like a great part.

Clarissa Draper said...

I love this actor and the character is so interesting. Can't wait to see him in a Gunn movie.

Maurice Mitchell said...

I was surprised too David. I'm guessing it was supposed to surprise everyone. ;)

Maurice Mitchell said...

Del Toro always has great intensity, so I'm hoping he'll play a "bad penny."

Maurice Mitchell said...

Just casually ask him what he thinks about "The Collector." When he says he's never heard of him, then look shocked and drop some knowledge Yolanda.

Maurice Mitchell said...

I didn't notice the Brainiac connection till you pointed it out Pat! If the Collector has an arc it would be ironic.

Maurice Mitchell said...

Thanks Gina!

Maurice Mitchell said...

It's worth a shot MPax. Maybe for the Backworlds trilogy? What character would he play?

Maurice Mitchell said...

He's brilliant Clarissa. What's your favorite role from him?

Clarissa Draper said...

I first feel in love with him in Traffic but he was good in Snatch too.

MarkM said...

Interesting choice. Of course, this means we'll need subtitles to understand anything The Collector will be saying....lol.

Maybe it's just me, but Del Toro has a serious case of 'the mumbles'.

Bill Schrodinger said...

Hate to necro your comment, but in the trailer the grunts that work for Ronan Have Brainiac's logo on their breastplates, even though this is Marvel...


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