Disney is reportedly not rushing to replace James Gunn after firing him from Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3. One of the biggest shakeups to hit the Marvel Cinematic Universe came less than two weeks ago when Gunn became the center of controversy. Some old tweets resurfaced and the reaction to Gunn's past attempts at humor resulted in Disney swiftly moving to remove him from Marvel Studios, firing him as the writer/director of Guardians 3. In the time since, the conversation has only continued, but is now shifting towards the support of Gunn being brought back.
The biggest move came when the Guardians of the Galaxy cast released an open letter supporting Gunn in the wake of his firing, though they weren't necessarily calling for him to be rehired. With the full cast in his corner (as well as over 300,000 individuals in an online petition), many have begun to wonder if Gunn could actually return. At this point, Disney isn't looking to make another quick decision.
In Variety's article covering the cast letter, they shed some light on the situation. They highlight the surprising silence that has fallen over Guardians 3 since Disney made the initial announcement, and how this is odd considering the film's placement in Marvel's schedule. The movie is scheduled to start production early next year, and a director would need to be found soon to make that possible, not to mention a writer to presumably rewrite the script as well. Given the silence, Variety reports there's "a growing feeling that Gunn could be reinstated." However, that doesn't expressly mean Disney is looking into reinstating Gunn.
Disney making the decision to bring Gunn back is not something they would do lightly. Walt Disney Studios chairman Alan Horn made strong remarks regarding why they severed ties with Gunn, so going back on that won't be done easily. Disney's patience with this situation could be tied to their original quick decision, which has backfired in the eyes of some. After possibly being burned once already, taking the time to gather all the facts and speak with everyone involved would be for the best.
If Disney doesn't decide to bring Gunn back, then this silence and patience could just be to make sure they find the right replacement. The cast is backing the two-time MCU director, so anyone who steps in to fill Gunn's shoes will need to be welcomed with open arms. It could also be the result of other internal discussions, such as delaying Guardians 3 until they can better figure it out. The longer Guardians 3 goes without having a director attached, the lesser the chance it is able to hit the early 2019 production start and expected 2020 release. But, if Disney does bring him back, then the film could move forward smoothly.
We will bring you more details on the Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3/James Gunn situation as they become available.
- Captain Marvel (2019) release date: Mar 08, 2019
- The Avengers 4 / Avengers: Endgame (2019) release date: Apr 26, 2019
- Spider-Man: Far From Home (2019) release date: Jul 02, 2019