James Gunn's vision for Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3 is reportedly being kept alive at Marvel Studios and Walt Disney Studios - is that all because of Kevin Feige? Last month, Gunn was fired from Disney immediately after a slew of old tweets reemerged online, many of which contained jokes about rape and pedophilia. Although Gunn apologized years ago for making those jokes, there are many people who had never seen the filmmaker make such remarks before. As a result, Disney's Alan Horn made the quick decision to let go of the director from Guardians 3.
Since then, an online campaign has been launched by fans to get Gunn reinstated as Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3's director, with the entire core cast of the Guardians franchise in Gunn's corner. But of them all, Dave Bautista is the only person who has gone on record saying he would quit if Disney didn't at least use Gunn's script. Considering that not only is the Guardians 3 script complete but is also meant to set up the future of the Marvel Cinematic Universe, it doesn't make sense to toss it out. In fact, Disney is reportedly using Gunn's script for the film, even though they are searching for a new director. And it seems like that's because of Feige.
In a new video on MCU Cosmic, Jeremy Conrad suggests that Kevin Feige is the person championing James Gunn's script behind the scenes. While that's certainly possible, it's far from a confirmed fact and should be treated as a rumor. Conrad and his sources have been correct on occasion, but not enough to inspire confidence. Plus, the way the rumor is set up, it sounds as if it could be an informed guess based solely on Disney's structure and what is already known. After all, Kevin Feige is the head honcho at Marvel Studios, which has been operating as a subsidiary of Walt Disney Studios for the past three years. Therefore, Alan Horn is his boss and, logically, the person to convince to keep Gunn's script in play. UPDATE: Deadline reports that Marvel Studios is trying to seek a compromise with Disney that would bring James Gunn back, but it's unclear if they want him back as a writer or a director, or both.
What's interesting about this whole situation is that the only executive at Disney who has made a statement on the matter is Horn. Neither Disney CEO Bob Iger nor Feige has made any sort of public remark on this - and it has been several weeks since the story broke. With the future of the MCU hanging in the balance (from a story standpoint, not a directorial), there's a lot to be discussed and figured out. Guardians 3 presumably won't make its planned 2019 production start date, which was already being prepped, so it would make sense that Feige would be outraged on some level. But it's difficult to determine exactly what's happening behind the scenes and whether or not he's truly "fighting" to keep Gunn's vision alive.
In some way, sure. Feige must be trying to save Guardians somehow. The Marvel Cinematic Universe is his brainchild, so if there's anyone at the Mouse House that's still in Gunn's corner, it would be him. He hired Gunn in the first place and gave the writer-director the freedom to create something new, something that eventually led to projects like Thor: Ragnarok being greenlit. So it's no wonder Guardians 3 was being developed as the jumping off point for a new MCU saga. While it's reportedly unlikely that Gunn will come back to direct Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3, there's still a way for his story to live on (and for the MCU to thrive from it). If his script does end up being used, it'll probably be because of Feige. Again, it's his studio.
- Captain Marvel (2019) release date: Mar 08, 2019
- The Avengers 4 / Untitled Avengers Movie (2019) release date: May 03, 2019
- Spider-Man: Far From Home (2019) release date: Jul 05, 2019