The ongoing saga of James Gunn's firing has dominated a great deal of film industry analysts' conversations as of late, and it looks like there's another potential development today, as Marvel Studios has possibly been meeting with Disney via "back channel conversations" (which is sort of confusing, seeing how Disney, you know, owns Marvel) in order to discuss possibly reinstating dismissed Guardians of the Galaxy writer/director James Gunn.
According to Deadline's Mike Fleming:
"Sources said the Marvel contingent is trying to persuade Disney to explore a compromise that might bring Gunn back into the fold for Guardians 3, something that clearly would be best for the franchise. There is no clash or strong arming here. I’m told it’s a discussion that comes in the wake of the whole cast declaring their loyalty to Gunn, whose abrupt exit has put a thriving film franchise in a rocky place. One would have to label this 11th hour approach to be a long shot, but the community is talking about it."
This comes after the cast members' impassioned letter regarding Gunn's termination (not to mention Dave Bautista's continued public flexing over the issue), plus Disney's own insistence that he's not going to be brought back into the MCU fold anytime soon. Plus, we've been hearing rumors that Gunn's been approached with a ton of projects (many arriving with huge paychecks), so there'a chance Marvel's hoping they can convince Disney they put a cash cow unnaturally out to pasture.
Obviously, all of this is still in development, but it's fascinating to watch how the mechanics of this story have been playing out so publicly. James Gunn is a beloved figure for both fans and creatives, and has apologized many times over for his past transgressions. Maybe Kevin Feige & Co. can urge their comrades in the Maus Haus not to treat him like some nameless number because a bunch of alt-right trolls said so.
To be continued...