Disney today fired the director who has been at the helm of the high-profile “Guardians of the Galaxy” feature franchise. Walt Disney Studios Chairman Alan Horn announced the removal of James Gunn, who had been working on “Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3,” the AP reports.
The action was taken because of old tweets that surfaced recently in which Gunn reportedly joked about subjects including pedophilia and rape.
In a statement, Horn said: “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.”
The AP report adds: “Gunn has been writer and director of the ‘Guardians of the Galaxy’ franchise from the start, taking an obscure Marvel Comics title about a group of multicolored misfits and turning it into a space opera decked with comedy and retro music that made Chris Pratt a major movie star. Through two installments the franchise has brought in more than $1.5 billion in global box office.”
Gunn offered an apology following his firing, saying in a statement: “My words of nearly a decade ago were, at the time, totally failed and unfortunate efforts to be provocative. I have regretted them for many years since — not just because they were stupid, not at all funny, wildly insensitive, and certainly not provocative like I had hoped, but also because they don’t reflect the person I am today or have been for some time. Regardless of how much time has passed, I understand and accept the business decisions taken today. Even these many years later, I take full responsibility for the way I conducted myself then.”