After news broke about the firing of James Gunn as director of Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3 this week after offensive tweets from the past arose which joked about rape and pedophilia, many have taken to his defense over Walt Disney Studios’ decision. Perhaps the most supportive statement came from Sean Gunn, the brother of the now disgraced director, who penned a very lengthy Twitter post defending his brother. Fans of Guardians of the Galaxy will recognize Sean as Kraglin, the right-hand-man of Yondu. Sean also did the motion capture on set for Rocket in both Vol. 1 and Vol. 2.
Sean’s Twitter post was 10 tweets long and have gained thousands of retweets and likes since he posted the thread yesterday.
“1. I hope it goes without saying that I love and support my brother James. And I’m quite proud of how kind, generous, and compassionate he is with the people in his life, whether they are friends, family, colleagues, fans, or strangers,” he began the post.
Sean went on to explain he always knew James would be an artist since they were children, and admitted his “voice” in expressing his artistry was “clunky, misguided, or downright stupid, and sometimes wonderful, moving, and hilarious.”
— James Gunn (@JamesGunn) May 3, 2017
He later stated that James had spent the last six years of his life devoted to the Guardians of the Galaxy franchise, as well as the Marvel Cinematic Universe, and eventually strayed away from being the man who “made things up to shock people.”
“5. I saw that he was more open-hearted than the guy who needed to get a rise out of people by making nasty or offensive jokes (or whatever you choose to call them — I don’t think his bluer material was ever his funniest and neither does Mom),” he tweeted on.
Sean then paralleled the change his brother went through with the change the Guardians themselves went through in the first film. He compared James to Peter Quill (Chris Pratt) and how he brought the team together in change for the greater good.
2. Since he was a kid, it was clear he had a desire (maybe destiny) to be an artist, tell stories, find his voice through comics, films, his band. The struggle to find that voice was sometimes clunky, misguided, or downright stupid, and sometimes wonderful, moving, and hilarious.
— Sean Gunn (@seangunn) July 21, 2018
Toward the end of his Twitter thread, Sean went on to explain that these inappropriate tweets were not “new information” and James had spoken about his edginess in the past in interviews and said his transformation has always been a “part of the story.”
“9. So I guess my hope is that fans continue to watch and appreciate the Guardians movies, not despite the fact that the filmmaker used to be kind of a jackass, but because of it. They are, after all, movies about discovering your best self,” he continued. “10. Working on those movies made my brother a better person, and they made me one too. I’m proud of that. Peace.”
Drax himself, Dave Bautista, has spoken out as well regarding James’s firing, saying he was not okay with Disney’s decision. The rest of the Guardians of the Galaxy crew has stayed noticeably silent on the matter, including Chris Pratt and Zoe Saldana.