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Disney won't be hiring James Gunn back to direct Guardians Vol. 3

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Aug 15, 2018, 11:48 PM EDT (Updated)

It's been a long month of back-and-forth rumors and reports since Disney made the decision to fire James Gunn from the Guardians of the Galaxy franchise. 

Now, it appears that Gunn will not be back to direct the third film in the Guardians franchise. 

As reported by Variety, Disney Studios chairman Alan Horn met with Gunn to discuss the possibility of him being reinstated. While the meeting was described as civil, Horn stood by his decision, opting not to hire Gunn back. 

Marvel Studios head Kevin Feige was out of town, thus unable to attend. While he'd been pushing to bring Gunn back into the MCU, he ultimately stands by Disney's decision. 

This news will come as a blow to many who've supported Gunn since his firing last month after some of his old, offensive tweets were resurfaced. This includes the Guardians cast, who penned an open letter in support of the director. Dave Bautista has stated that he wants to be released from his contract in the event Gunn wouldn't return.

Recently, Guardians star Chris Pratt said it was a "complicated situation for everybody," saying that the cast was torn over their loyalty to Gunn and their love of playing the band of space outlaws. 

The third Guardians film was expected to start filming in early 2019. Once Feige returns, they will focus their efforts on finding a new director to helm the third installment. As previously reported, the studio still plans on using the script Gunn completed prior to his firing.