The Guardians of the Galaxy movies cast has released an open letter that announces they "fully support" James Gunn, following the writer/director's firing this month. Said letter includes signatures from nine of the films' main cast members, including stars Chris Pratt, Zoe Saldana, and Dave Bautista.
Gunn was fired from the upcoming Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3 by Disney on Friday, July 20. The decision was made after conservative websites and commentators dug up old tweets posted to Gunn's now-deleted Twitter account - wherein he makes intentionally offensive jokes about pedophilia, rape, 9/11, and other extremely sensitive topics - prior to his time working for the Mouse House and Marvel Studios on the Guardians of the Galaxy movies. Gunn has since issued a statement in response to his firing, saying he's regretted his tweets "for many years" but accepts Disney's decision and takes "full responsibility" for his conduct.
Since then, cast members like Pratt, Saldana, and Bautista have all voiced their support for Gunn on social media. Fans have also started a Chang.org petition to get Disney to rehire Gunn for Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3 that currently has over 335K signatures (and counting). The Guardians actors have now issued an open letter that is signed by Pratt, Saldana, and Bautista, along with their costars Vin Diesel, Bradley Cooper, Pom Klementieff, Karen Gillan, Sean Gunn, and Michael Rooker. You can read the full letter (which the cast has posted to their various social media accounts, Pratt included) in the space below:
As the Guardians of the Galaxy cast mention in their letter, Gunn's firing has since given rise to "outlandish conspiracy theories" about why Disney fired him. Several of the right-wing pundits who called for Gunn's firing have insinuated that he actually committed acts of rape and pedophilia, rather than only joked about them. Even conservative politicians like Texas Senator Ted Cruz has made reference to these conspiracy theories and called for a potential investigation, via his Twitter account. However, these claims are not based on any real allegations, and no one has accused Gunn of committing any of the heinous crimes that he made jokes about.
At the time of writing, Marvel Studios has neither issued an official statement about Gunn's firing nor addressed their new plans for Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3. It should further be noted that this open letter doesn't technically call on Disney to rehire Gunn and instead expresses the Guardians cast's approval of the outpouring of fan support for the filmmaker. However, at the same time, this document does make the cast's stance crystal-clear and puts more pressure on both Marvel Studios and the Mouse House to respond in some fashion. To paraphrase the letter itself, the story of Gunn's firing isn't over - "not by a long shot".
We will bring you more details on the Guardians of the Galaxy/James Gunn situation as they become available.
Source: Chris Pratt
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