Supporters of embattled director James Gunn, including some high-profile Hollywood stars — among them Dave Bautista and Selma Blair — are calling on Disney to rehire the director after the company fired him for old social media posts joking about pedophilia, violence against women, and the Holocaust. Along with personal tweets of support for the director, a Change.org petition asking Disney to reverse its decision takes a particularly raw approach to trying to promote its cause.
Gunn, who defended ABC's firing of Roseanne Barr and recently called on Hulu to stop advertising with Laura Ingraham, came under fire last week after The Daily Caller published some of his old posts, including jokes about the Holocaust, AIDS, and a monkey masturbating on a child's face. Though Gunn has disavowed the revolting posts and apologized, within 24 hours of the tweets coming to light, Disney fired the popular director.
"The offensive attitudes and statements discovered on James’ Twitter feed are indefensible and inconsistent with our studio’s values, and we have severed our business relationship with him," said Walt Disney Studios chairman Alan Horn in a statement Friday.
While some of the "Guardians of the Galaxy" stars, including Chris Pratt and Zoe Saldana, have been more indirect in their support of Gunn, Bautista has made clear that he disagrees with Disney's decision.
In addition, over 268,000 people, including "Hell Boy" star Selma Blair, have now signed a petition to "RE-HIRE JAMES GUN." The rather quirky petition acknowledges off the bat that it "likely won't change anything," but goes on to defend people making "sh***y jokes" every now and then.
"I agree on the point that if people say a bunch of stupid sh** while working for a studio, the studio has full right to fire him over the possible controversy," the petition reads. "This situation is very different though as he made these jokes years before he was working for Disney and also the fact that they were jokes. I agree with most, including Gunn himself that the jokes were sh***y and un-funny but they were still jokes, it wasn't an opinion or a statement, it was just a bad attempt at being funny."
Here's the full text of the petition (warning: language):
I'm smart enough to know this most likely won't change anything but hopefully, this could get Disney to realize the mistake they made and not do it again in the future.
I agree on the point that if people say a bunch of stupid shit while working for a studio, the studio has full right to fire him over the possible controversy. This situation is very different though as he made these jokes years before he was working for Disney and also the fact that they were jokes. I agree with most, including Gunn himself that the jokes were shitty and un-funny but they were still jokes, it wasn't an opinion or a statement, it was just a bad attempt at being funny.
The other thing is if you do this to Gunn you have to do it for all the other directors who have said some crappy joke sometime in their life, which is all of them, cause I doubt there's one human on this planet who hasn't made a shitty joke once or twice in there life.
If Marvel would come to their senses and re-hire Gunn that would be great but if all we can do is have proof by your signatures that Disney made a mistake i would still count that as a win.