James Gunn has been reinstated as director of Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3. Disney and Marvel Studios had previously fired Gunn in 2018 after offensive old tweets of his had resurfaced.
According to a report from Deadline, the decision to reinstate the embattled director came after multiple meetings between Gunn and Walt Disney Studios president Alan Horn, who was reportedly “persuaded by Gunn’s public apology and his handling of the situation after.”
Gunn was originally fired from Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3 after old tweets about rape and pedophilia resurfaced in July 2018. Gunn, who blamed himself for poor judgment, claimed that the tweets were jokes.
One of the now-deleted tweets read, “I like when little boys touch me in my silly place.”
Another tweet said: “The best thing about being raped is when you’re done being raped and it’s like ‘whew this feels great, not being raped!’”
At the time of Gunn’s firing, the main cast of the movie — Chris Pratt, Bradley Cooper, Zoe Saldana, Vin Diesel, Dave Bautista, Karen Gillan, Pom Klementieff, Sean Gunn and Michael Rooker — released a public statement in solidarity with the director.
In the statement, while they said they are not “here to defend his jokes of many years “, they characterized Gunn as “a good man” whose heart they “know, trust, and love.”
Despite being fired from Guardians of the Galaxy, Gunn was quickly signed by Warner Bros. and DC to write and direct the upcoming sequel to Suicide Squad, which is set to see Idris Elba take over Will Smith’s role of Deadshot.
Gunn will begin production on Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3 following the completion of the Suicide Squad sequel.
At the time of this writing, a release date for Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3 has not been announced.