James Gunn is returning as the director of Guardians of the Galaxy after being kicked out from the post in July 2018 for offensive tweets.
Gunn was removed from the franchise in July 2018 after a series of offensive tweets uncovered from many years before. After his dismissal, the stars of the Guardians of the Galaxy franchise took to social media to say that while they disapproved of the tweets, they did not feel that it warranted removal.
At the time, Gunn made his position clear on his Twitter account, writing, “Many people who have followed my career know when I started, I viewed myself as a provocateur, making movies and telling jokes that were outrageous and taboo. As I have discussed publicly many times, as I’ve developed as a person, so has my work and my humor.”
He added, “It’s not to say I’m better, but I am very, very different than I was a few years ago; today I try to root my work in love and connection and less in anger. My days saying something just because it’s shocking and trying to get a reaction are over.”
He also said, “In the past, I have apologized for humor of mine that hurt people. I truly felt sorry and meant every word of my apologies,” and, “For the record, when I made these shocking jokes, I wasn’t living them out. I know this is a weird statement to make, and seems obvious, but, still, here I am, saying it.”
He concluded, “Anyway, that’s the completely honest truth: I used to make a lot of offensive jokes. I don’t anymore. I don’t blame my past self for this, but I like myself more and feel like a more full human being and creator today. Love to you all.”
Since then, he has been completely silent on social media while fans have been clamoring for Disney to rehire the director. Reports indicated that Bradley Cooper might take on the directorial role for the franchise. Gunn was being hired by DC to direct the Suicide Squad sequel. However, Gunn has been rehired by Disney for the third Guardians of the Galaxy film.
The director took to social media to express his appreciation with the note, “I am tremendously grateful to every person out there who has supported me over the past few months. I am always learning and will continue to work at being the best human being I can be. I deeply appreciate Disney’s decision and I am excited to continue making films that investigate the ties of love that bind us all. I have been, and continue to be incredibly humbled by your love and support. From the bottom of my heart, thank you. Love to you all.”
Guardians of the Galaxy will come to theaters in 2020.