Nova Prime Irani Rael is the commander of the Nova Corps. She led her people to victory with the help of the Guardians of the Galaxy when Ronan the Accuser attempted to destroy her home planet of Xandar with the Power Stone.
Ending the War
Irani Rael joined the Nova Corps and rose through its ranks, becoming the Nova Prime, the highest ranked member, as well as the leader of the Corps. During her time as the Nova Prime, Rael dedicated much of her time to ending generations of bloodshed between the Kree and the Xandarians. Eventually, a peace treaty was signed ending the thousand-year war between them.
Keeping the Peace
Despite the treaty, Ronan the Accuser, a Kree warrior who was disgusted by the treaty signed by the Kree Empire and the Nova Empire which signaled an end to the Kree-Nova War, continued massacring Xandarian outposts across the galaxy, slaughtering children and families in the process. As a response, Rael appealed to the Kree Ambassador, urging a response from the Kree Empire that condemned those horrific actions.
However, the ambassador refused to condemn Ronan's war atrocities against Xandarians, saying that it was her business and he had more pressing matters to attend to. As the Ambassador ended the meeting, Rael cursed at him as Garthan Saal then approached her and informed her and other Nova officers that they had recently arrested one of Ronan's comrades, Gamora, as well as three other outlaws.
Several days later, the Guardians of the Galaxy and the Yondu Ravager Clan arrived on Xandar, after having escaped from the Kyln. Peter Quill informed the Nova Corps that Ronan the Accuser's fleet was on its way with the Power Stone which could destroy the entire planet; Quill contacted Rhomann Dey and requested their help in defending Xandar.
At the Nova Corps Headquarters, Rael was approached by Rhomann Dey, who informed her of Star-Lord's request to help them in fighting Ronan the Accuser to prevent his plan to destroy Xandar with the Power Stone. While Garthan Saal insisted that they were tricking them because of their criminal pasts, Rael asked Dey if he trusted Quill's warning and offer to help them, to which he responded that he did. Rael reluctantly agreed to trust them and ordered an evacuation of the city. Rael then ordered Garthan Saal to lead the Xandarian fleet in a counterattack against Ronan's army.
A great battle took place over Xandar. Rael knew their priority had to be to keep Ronan from landing his ship and unleashing the Orb's power upon the planet; to stop this, she ordered Saal and the fleet to form a blockade to slow Ronan's path while Star-Lord's team entered the ship. In response, Ronan used the Orb's power to destroy the Nova Corps' ships, killing hundreds of men including Saal. In the end, Ronan was killed and his army was defeated.
Gaining the Orb
With the battle won, Rael promoted Corpsman Rhomann Dey to the rank of Denarian in the wake of Garthan Saal's death. She then gathered the Guardians of the Galaxy together and gave Star-Lord information about his mysterious father, who, it turned out, was not human but part of a strange and ancient race. She expressed her gratitude to the Guardians for their role in defending her homeworld. As a result, all of their criminal records were expunged by the Nova Corps.
The Guardians of the Galaxy soon left Xandar on the rebuilt ship, the Milano, but before they left Quill gave Rael the Orb to keep it from the wrong hands. Already aware of the incredible dangers such a powerful weapon held, Rael personally ensured that it was locked away deep in a vault within the Nova Corps Headquarters with security present at all times to ensure its protection from anyone who would use its power for evil.
Irani Rael is a strong and stern leader. Having achieved a top position within the Xandarian hierarchy, she proved to be able to lead men to battle and does not fear to confront other political leaders like the Kree Ambassador. She is also keen on protecting her people, as she demonstrated by making the evacuation of civilians a priority during the Battle of Xandar. During the same battle, she agreed to work with Ravagers, who Xandarians usually considered dangerous if not enemies, in order to prevent Ronan the Accuser from destroying Xandar, showing that she places the interest of her people above all other consideration. Rael also pays attention to her subordinates' opinion regarding strategic matters, like when she asks Rhomann Dey if he thought Star-Lord could be trusted, and shows gratitude to anyone who helps her protecting the Xandarians like the Guardians of the Galaxy.
- Leadership: As Nova Prime and commander of the Nova Corps, Irani Rael is at the head of a powerful military force she led during the Battle of Xandar.
- Orb: Following the Battle of Xandar, the Guardians of the Galaxy trusted Rael with the Orb containing the Power Stone so it could be kept away from malevolent use. To that end, Rael sealed the Orb in a high-security vault in the Nova Corps headquarters.
- Nova Corps Headquarters: To be added
- In the comics, Irani Rael was a Rigellian Nova Centurion recruited following the destruction of Xandar. Rael never had the rank of Nova Prime, which was instead originally held by Rhomann Dey before his death.
Behind the Scenes
- Although confirmed in interviews to be named Irani Rael, the character is addressed on screen only as "Nova-Prime", and Glenn Close is credited as such on all official materials.
- James Gunn initially announced that Glenn Close would reprise her role as Irani Rael in Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2, however, the character did not appear in the final cut of the film, suggesting that she was later written out.
- Dani Biernat was a stunt double for Glenn Close in the role of Irani Rael.