Disney fired Guardians of the Galaxy director James Gunn after controversial tweets he wrote resurfaced on social media.
A statement from Alan Horn, chairman of The Walt Disney Studios says,
“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.”
According to The Daily Caller, the tweets came out in 2008 and 2009 and covered subjects such as rape, pedophilia, and sex.
Before the news of his departure with Disney and the upcoming Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3, Gunn commented Thursday about the attention his previous tweets were getting.
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. 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.”
Gunn publicly apologized for his before being hired on to work with Disney and Marvel.
In the past, I have apologized for humor of mine that hurt people. I truly felt sorry and meant every word of my apologies.”
He went on to say,
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. 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 you to you all.”
ABC News says Gunn released a statement Friday,
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 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 hbas 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. To everyone inside my industry and beyond, I again offer my deepest apologies. Love to all.”
While no longer working on Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3, it is unknown if Gunn will have any input on Avengers 4.
The director is no longer set to appear for a panel at San Diego Comic-Con.