James Gunn says Warner Bros. 'offered whatever I wanted' after Disney sacking

Hanna Flint
Contributor
James Gunn attends the grand opening of Guardians of The Galaxy. (Richard Harbaugh/Disneyland Resort via Getty Images)

James Gunn says Warner Bros offered him carte blanche to make what he wanted after the filmmaker was sacked by Disney.

Gunn was given the heave ho by The Walt Disney Company after it received backlash over controversial jokes about rape and paedophilia he had made on social media over a decade earlier.

On 20 July, 2018, 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.”

The filmmaker was scheduled to make the third instalment of his Guardians of the Galaxy franchise but after being fired, Warner Bros approached him with an enticing offer.

“I was basically offered whatever I wanted,” Gunn said in response to a fan question on Instagram. “I most wanted to do ‘Squad.’”

Soon enough, it was announced that he would be writing and directing The Suicide Squad which would welcome back Suicide Squad stars Margot Robbie (Harley Quinn), Jai Courtney (Captain Boomerang), Joel Kinnaman (Rick Flag) and Viola Davis (Amanda Waller).

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However, Gunn’s Guardians of the Galaxy cast were not impressed by Disney’s decision to fire their filmmaker and they spoke out against the decision in an open letter.

“We fully support James Gunn,” it read. “We were all shocked by his abrupt firing last week and have intentionally waited these ten days to respond in order to think, pray, listen, and discuss. In that time, we have been encouraged by the outpouring of support from fans and members of the media who wish to see James reinstated as director of Volume 3 as well as discouraged by those so easily duped into believing the many outlandish conspiracy theories surrounding him.”

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Eight months later, the cast got their wish as Disney announced it had reinstated Gunn as Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3 director though he would continue to helm The Suicide Squad, which is currently filming.

Idris Elba, Peter Capaldi, John Cena, Michael Rooker, Taika Waititi, David Dastmalchian, Storm Reid, Alice Braga, Joaquín Cosío, Juan Diego Botto, Tinashe Kajese, Julio Ruiz, Jennifer Holland, Daniela Melchior, Steve Agee, Maling Ng, Pete Davidson, Sean Gunn, Flula Borg, and Nathan Fillion will also be in the cast.

Gunn also said, during the Instagram Stories Q&A, that when it comes to the most challenging filmmaking experience, [The Suicide] Squad is the most complex and biggest but also the most fun so far.”

The Suicide Squad set to be released until 6 August, 2021.