James Gunn, the planned director of Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3, has been fired by Disney after a series of offensive posts on social media emerged.
The move to removed Gunna comes just days after old tweets by the filmmaker were revealed by conservative personality Jack Posobiec. Some of the tweets are dated as far back as 2009.
The messages include highly offensive jokes about important subjects such as rape, transphobia, and paedophilia. “The Expendables was so manly I fucked the shit out the little pussy boy next to me! The boys ARE back in town!” read one tweet.
“The best thing about being raped is when you’re done being raped and it’s like ‘whew this feels great, not being raped!’” another read.
Walt Disney Studios chairman Alan Horn said in a statement: ”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.”
Now, in the wake of his firing, Gunn has apologised for the messages: “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 humour.”
5. 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.
— James Gunn (@JamesGunn) July 20, 2018
The director has since released an official statement which reads: “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. All I can do now, beyond offering my sincere and heartfelt regret, is to be the best human being I can be.”