"At the end of the day, the thing I know the most, is that they were jokes, and this harsh, rash decision to fire him empowered some terrible, frightful people", Bautista said, adding about the backlash he himself got: "It was draining".
Gunn's rehiring is a decision that was reportedly made some time ago after meetings with Walt Disney Studios chairman Alan Horn, and will not conflict with his work at Warner Bros. on The Suicide Squad.
Gunn publicly apologized, saying that his "words of almost a decade ago were, at the time, totally failed and unfortunate efforts to be provocative". "As I have discussed publicly many times, as I've developed as a person, so has my work and my humor".
Although Gunn apologized and issued a statement saying, "I understand and accept the business decisions taken", there was nearly immediately a backlash on the director's behalf, with supporters claiming that the studio had overreacted and moved too precipitously to sever ties.
Gunn added a thank you to Disney and said he was excited to "continue making films that investigate the ties of love that bind us all".
Fleming reports "the decision to rehire Gunn was one that was mulled and actually made months ago, following conversations with Disney studio leadership and the team at Marvel Studios". He has been rehired to direct the third movie after he was sacked in July past year.
Guardians 3 was put on indefinite hold at the time, although the characters will appear in Avengers Endgame.
The film was previously said to have a 2020 release date, but there has not yet been an announcement for when the movie will instead begin production or debut. This immediately raises the question, however, and what this means for his being the writer and director on The Suicide Squad.