Disney has rehired James Gunn as director of Guardians of the Galaxy 3.
Gunn was fired in July 2018 after his old tweets, which made light of paedophilia and rape, were resurfaced by conservative personalities online. The director apologised for his jokes, saying: “My words of nearly a decade ago were, at the time, totally failed and unfortunate efforts to be provocative.”
Deadline revealed today (March 15) that Gunn has been reinstated to helm the forthcoming Marvel movie.
The publication reports that Walt Disney Studios president Alan Horn has met with Gunn several times over the course of the past year and has since been persuaded, by Gunn’s public apology and handling of the aftermath, to rehire him.
- Read more: Guardians Of The Galaxy 3: what we know so far about the next chapter in the Marvel series
It was previously confirmed that, despite Gunn’s firing, his script for the film would be retained. Chris Pratt, who plays Peter Quill in the franchise, told MTV News in February that Gunn’s script is “off the chain, it’s so good,” adding, “We’re gonna deliver the movie. We’re gonna give the fans what they deserve.”
Pratt was among a number of other cast members including Zoe Saldana, Bradley Cooper and Dave Bautista who penned an open letter in July 2018 calling for Gunn’s reinstatement. In an Instagram post with a copy of the letter, Pratt commented: “Although I don’t support James Gunn’s inappropriate jokes from years ago, he is a good man.”
Following the initial fallout from Gunn’s comments, Marvel Studios turned its focus toward Captain Marvel and Avengers: Endgame, with the studio remaining tight-lipped about the future of the next Guardians instalment.
Marvel boss Kevin Feige said they intended to complete the film but have not yet announced an official release date. Gunn, however, has previously stated that the movie would open in 2020.