Although Disney’s firing of writer/director James Gunn from Guardians of the Galaxy Vol.3 was fast and sudden, most of the movie’s cast took their time in responding to the controversy. Dave Bautista was quick to condemn the decision, but his co-stars waited more than a week to issue a joint-statement on the matter, in which they offered Gunn their support. Now Chris Pratt, who plays lead character Peter Quill in the Marvel series, has spoken further about Gunn’s dismissal.
In an interview with the Associated Press, Pratt said that the situation was “complicated.” Gunn was fired after old tweets that saw the director joking about topics such as pedophilia and rape resurfaced online.
“It’s not an easy time,” Pratt said. “We all love James and he’s a good friend of ours, but we also really love playing the Guardians of the Galaxy. It’s a complicated situation for everybody. And you know, we just want to move forward and do what’s right and be the best people we can be.”
Pratt went on to discuss last month’s Comic-Con, at which he kept an unsurprisingly low profile. “I love going to Comic-Con but I ended up not doing a lot of interviews around that time just because it was so shocking,” he said. “All I know is we put a lot of time, thought, and effort into the statement that we released about it. And I think we all kind of want that statement to be essentially what we have to say about it. And we were pretty clear and honest about how we feel.”
Pratt’s comments follow rumors last week that Disney and Marvel have had unofficial conversations about rehiring Gunn back for the third Guardians movie. Sources for Deadline stated that “the Marvel contingent is trying to persuade Disney to explore a compromise that might bring Gunn back.” While the movie has never officially been given a release date, it was reportedly set to start production in February 2019 ahead of a 2020 release.
In contrast to Pratt’s more measured comments, Bautista has been far more outspoken about Gunn’s exit. In a recent interview, he stated that he did not want be involved with Vol.3 if the studio didn’t use Gunn’s script. “Where I’m at right now is that if [Marvel] don’t use that script, then I’m going to ask them to release me from my contract,” he said. “Cut me out or recast me. I’d be doing James a disservice if I didn’t.”