After being fired from the project last July, Disney is officially bringing back filmmaker James Gunn to direct Marvel Studios' Guardians of the Galaxy 3.
According to a report by Deadline, the decision to officially reinstate Gunn was actually made months ago after Disney and Marvel execs both met and agreed to bring the writer-director back onto production.
Gunn was dropped from the Disney and Marvel Studios roster last year after old, offensive tweets he made about controversial topics like rape and pedophilia were dug up and resurfaced by conservative, right-wingers, The Hollywood Reporter reports.
"My words of nearly a decade ago were, at the time, totally failed and unfortunate efforts to be provocative," Gunn said in a public apology following the controversy about his old tweets. "I have regretted them for many years since—not just because they were stupid, not at all funny, wildly insensitive, and certainly not provocative like I had hoped, but also because they don’t reflect the person I am today or have been for some time."
"Regardless of how much time has passed, I understand and accept the business decisions taken today. Even these many years later, I take full responsibility for the way I conducted myself then. All I can do now, beyond offering my sincere and heartfelt regret, is to be the best human being I can be: accepting, understanding, committed to equality, and far more thoughtful about my public statements and my obligations to our public discourse. To everyone inside my industry and beyond, I again offer my deepest apologies. Love to all."
Considering an open letter to get Gunn's directing job back was signed by the GOTG cast themselves (including Christ Pratt, Zoe Saldana, and Bradley Cooper) as soon as his firing was first announced, it's no surprise MCU fans had a lot of thoughts about today's news...
I'm so fucking glad James Gunn is out of cancel jail and will now be returning to direct the next Guardians film. It's such a shame that the right wing can provoke the Vampire Castle on the left so easily.
— Angie Speaks (@SpeaksAngie) March 15, 2019
Anyone conflating James Gunn with Cosby, Weinstein, Spacey, Singer, C.K. etc can fuck off the planet. Tweets are not actions, and play-acting politically-motivated alt-right trolls aren't real accusers or victims. Move along.
— Bob Chipman (@the_moviebob) March 15, 2019
For once, a witch is un-burned. Good. Let's tell the social media mob: No more. https://t.co/VWB1bUIlhN
— Robby Soave (@robbysoave) March 15, 2019
This is the guy that got Gunn fired! This is the guy who could have won if Disney didn't rehire James Gunn pic.twitter.com/3RgHwi9kVC
— CsK(@5upermanS) March 15, 2019
Gunn himself also took to Twitter to express his gratitude for the opportunity to work with Disney and Marvel again.
— James Gunn (@JamesGunn) March 15, 2019
"I am tremendously grateful to every person out there who has supported me over the past few months," he wrote. "I am always learning and will continue to work at being the best human being I can be. I deeply appreciate Disney's decision and I am excited to continue making films that investigate the ties of love that bind us all. I have been, and continue to be incredibly humbled by your love and support. From the bottom of my heart, thank you. Love to you all.
Although it hasn't been announced when Guardians of the Galaxy 3 will begin production (the film was previously put on hold following Gunn's exit), with Gunn back to direct, we're sure we'll be seeing it hit theaters sooner rather than later.