Dave-BautistaJames Gunn’s Guardians of the Galaxy is one of the most anticipated comic book movies currently in development, for so many reasons. For a start, it’s the first and only original film coming our way in Marvel’s Phase Two. And, of course, its release date puts it one film behind The Avengers 2, and smart money says that it’s going to have one hell of a post-credits scene.

Chris Pratt was the first cast member to board the project last month, set to play Peter Quill, a.k.a. Star-Lord, the leader of the Guardians, and the offspring of a human and an alien.

THR report that the studio has now found its second cast member in Dave Bautista, who has closed a deal to play Drax the Destroyer. Bautista has been in the running for the part for the last few months, alongside the likes of Isaiah Mustafa, Patrick Wade and Jason Momoa.

Momoa was thought to be the front-runner for the part, but now Bautista has signed his deal, and we’re looking forward to seeing what he brings to the table. One need only look at the picture top-left to see that he has the kind of muscle to bring to a character called ‘Drax the Destroyer’.

Bautista’s character, Drax, is a human who is resurrected as a green warrior (and who will no doubt look absolutely immense on the big screen), for the sole purpose of killing Thanos.

The studio have reportedly been eyeing Jim Carrey and Adam Sandler for Guardians of the Galaxy. Though there’s still been no confirmation on that, the line-up is clearly starting to shape up nicely. With Pratt and Bautista now firmly on board, there’s a lot to look forward to here.

Gunn will be directing from a script by Nicole Perlman and Chris McCoy, with Gunn also thought to have had a hand in the script after coming on board. The film is set to shoot in England this summer, so hopefully we’ll be hearing some more casting news for Marvel’s space-set blockbuster soon.

Bautista is of course a six-time world champion wrestler, and most recently starred in RZA’s directorial debut last year, The Man with the Iron Fists. He’ll next be seen this September alongside Vin Diesel in David Twohy’s Riddick. And a franchise-starter like Guardians is definitely going to continue to put his name on the map in the acting world.

Guardians of the Galaxy will be hitting theatres on 1st August, 2014. It will be coming directly after Captain America: The Winter Soldier and before The Avengers 2, and it can’t come fast enough.