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A lot of people were shocked when Disney announced the firing of James Gunn from Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3 and the future of the Marvel Cinematic Universe. While some members of the Guardians cast, like Dave Bautista, were adamant in their support of Gunn from the beginning, other members of the cast were remaining mostly silent. This morning the cast has spoken with one voice, and they support James Gunn and want him back. Read their statement below.
Every member of the Guardians of the Galaxy cast signed the statement posted to Zoe Saldana's Twitter account. Needless to say, this is a huge statement of support. Any statement of individual support would have been important, and Gunn certainly has received some of those of the last week, but the entire casting speaking with one voice is meant to send a message.
While the statement itself does not specifically ask for Gunn's rehiring, Saldana says in her post the cast supports such an action. The rest of the Guardians of the Galaxy cast posted the same letter, though with their own comments. Dave Bautista included the trending #RehireJamesGunn hashtag. Chris Pratt posted the letter to his Instagram account which specifically said he'd like to see Gunn rehired, Pom Klementieff posted an identical message to Pratt's.The statement does focus on the idea of redemption, and that they believe the man they know as their friend and director is not the same person who made the comments so many years ago that resulted in his firing.
It will be interesting to see if a statement of this nature has any impact on the situation. It seemed unlikely that Disney would reverse course, even after the significant support James Gunn was receiving, but if the entire cast of the movie you want to make would rather see you rehire the old director rather than replace them, it's possible Disney could listen to the cast and use their faith in Gunn as a reason to bring him back.
Of course, the next question becomes, if that doesn't happen, what then? If the cast is in total agreement with each other on this situation, they absolutely will have some degree of power going into Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3, but would they use it? Could they, or would they, refuse to make the movie without James Gunn at the helm? One would assume the contracts they signed would have some stiff penalties attached if they did that, but perhaps the cast would be willing to accept them in order to take a stand. Although, the letter itself doesn't even hint at any such reaction.
On the one hand, seeing the cast make this statement at all is a huge message, to Disney as well as to fans of the Guardians of the Galaxy movies, on the other hand, without using it to argue for the actual reinstatement of James Gunn, which Saldana says they all support, it's not as powerful as it could be.
Yesterday, it seemed unlikely that Disney was going to change its minds on this topic, but if there is a chance they might, the support of the people James Gunn would be directing could be the thing that makes it happen.