TV & Movies

Rock Out To The Complicated History Behind Guardians Of The Galaxy Vol. 3

The production of “Vol. 3” was rocked in July 2018 when Gunn came under fire for his social media activity, resulting in him being fired from the movie. The development came after a re-emergence of some of Gunn’s old tweets (primarily made in 2008 and 2009), in which the Troma alumni and creator of such series as “PG Porn” made attempted jokes about sensitive topics like rape and pedophilia. 

In response to the ensuing calls for Gunn to face repercussions, Disney chairman Alan Horn released a statement noting that Gunn’s comments weren’t consistent with the Disney brand, which necessitated his firing. 

“The offensive attitudes and statements discovered on James’ Twitter feed are indefensible and inconsistent with our studio’s values,” he said. “We have severed our business relationship with him.”

The development, unique among so-called “cancellations” of the #MeToo era in that it seemed to unfold less as a reckoning and more as a politically-influenced comeuppance, inspired controversy across the entertainment industry. Once again, the brotherhood of the “Guardians” cast manifested itself, with main cast members like Chris Pratt and Bradley Cooper signing a statement of unwavering support for Gunn. 

“We fully support James Gunn,” the cast said, posting the statement on the social media accounts of Chris Pratt, Zoe Saldana, Dave Bautista, and other cast members. “We were all shocked by his abrupt firing last week and have intentionally waited these ten days to respond in order to think, pray, listen, and discuss. In that time, we’ve been encouraged by the outpouring of support from fans and members of the media who wish to see James reinstated as director of Volume 3 as well as discouraged by those so easily duped into believing the many outlandish conspiracy theories surrounding him.”

Considering how much of the franchise was Gunn’s voice, and now how many actors seemed unenthused about the prospect of moving on without him, “Vol. 3” seemed to be dead before its first scene had been filmed.

Despite rampant blowback to the firing, Variety reported in August 2018 that Disney, at the time, was not looking to rehire Gunn. In fact, the studio was prepared to delay the feature’s initial February 2019 date of principal photography to allow more time to find a new filmmaker.

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