James Gunn has been removed from directing “Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3” following the resurfacing of offensive tweets published on the director’s Twitter page years ago. Alan Horn, Chairman of The Walt Disney Studios, issued a statement declaring, “The offensive attitudes and statements discovered on James’ Twitter feed are indefensible and inconsistent with our studio’s values, and we have severed our business relationship with him.”
Old tweets Gunn published started resurfacing this week featuring the filmmaker joking about topics including pedophilia, homophobia, rape, and the September 11 terrorist attacks (numerous tweets can be seen in the post embedded below). One controversial tweet read: “I like when little boys touch me in my silly place.”
Gunn began deleting the offensive tweets this week and issued a statement on July 19 saying he had “developed as a person” since publishing them years ago.
“As I’ve developed as a person, so has my work and my humor,” Gunn said. “I am very, very different than I was a few years ago; today I try to root my work in love and connection and less in anger. My days saying something just because it’s shocking and trying to get a reaction are over.”
Gunn directed the first two “Guardians of the Galaxy” films for Marvel and Disney and was set to direct the third installment, which already has a 2020 release date. IndieWire has reached out to Disney and Gunn’s representatives for further comment.
— Jack Posobiec🇺🇸 (@JackPosobiec) July 20, 2018
1. Many people who have followed my career know when I started, I viewed myself as a provocateur, making movies and telling jokes that were outrageous and taboo. As I have discussed publicly many times, as I’ve developed as a person, so has my work and my humor.
— James Gunn (@JamesGunn) July 20, 2018