The Marvel Cinematic Universe might be a well-oiled machine for the most part, but it's not without the occasional controversy. During Phase Three, everything was going on without a hitch, until Guardians of the Galaxy director/writer James Gunn was suddenly fired by Disney. This decision was made when Gunn's offensive tweets from a decade go resurfaced, prompting Marvel to part with arguably its most visionary director.

Since then, the future of the Guardians of the Galaxy franchise has been unclear, as it's almost unfathomable to think of the group functioning without Gunn's voice and perspective. Guardians 3 has been delayed indefinitely, and the cast has voiced their support for their director. Karen Gillan (aka Nebula) recently spoke to the current state of the franchise, and seems hopeful that the threequel will happen eventually, saying:

I actually don't know [what's going on with Guardians 3], it's the honest answer. I feel like they're talking about it and trying to figure out what the next best move is. I'm hoping that it all comes together and we get to tell the story. It would be nice to continue it. I'm sure they will [continue]. I feel like they will. I don't really think there's a chance they won't.

Per Karen Gillan's recent appearance on the Shoot This Now podcast, it looks like not even Nebula herself knows what's going on over at Marvel Studios. The situation with James Gunn is new territory for the franchise, and it's made especially complicated due to specific director and franchise involved.

Considering how long the MCU has been releasing movies, directors have been replaced quite a few times. Franchises like Captain America, Iron Man and Thor have been passed off relatively easily, without any significant interruption in the overall story. But most properties are not Guardians of the Galaxy.

The scrappy ensemble project made serious money when it debuted back in 2014, introducing a lesser known group of Marvel characters to a wide audience. James Gunn put his perspective, sense of humor, taste in music, and even his dance moves into both films in the franchise-- a method that was worked like gangbusters.

So once James Gunn was suddenly fired by Disney, it seemed like the Guardians franchise might be dead. After all, how could it possibly function without Gunn? The director has also recently finished his first draft of Guardians 3's script, and it's unclear if that will be used to develop the threequel. Actor Dave Bautista has maintained he'd leave his role if Gunn's draft wasn't used, so there's a ton of balls in the air for the fan favorite property.

The Guardians of the Galaxy, including Nebula, will return to the Marvel Cinematic Universe when Avengers 4 arrives in theaters on May 3rd, 2019. In the meantime, check out our 2019 release list to plan your trips to the movies in the New Year.

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