One of the first people to give James Gunn a break in filmmaking was Lloyd Kaufman, head of Troma Entertainment, and he was also one of the first members of the industry to show his support for the filmmaker when Disney announced he was no longer directing Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3. With Gunn writing Suicide Squad 2 and potentially directing, Kaufman once again praised the director and, while he didn't enjoy the original film, thinks the sequel will be a vast improvement.
"Well, I was the first one to make a video trying to support James Gunn," Kaufman recalled to ScreenGeek about Gunn's firing. "I was the first so-called—I mean I'm not a celebrity, I'm in the underground—but I was the first one. So obviously I feel very strong about it. James is the nicest, kindest and most talented person that you'll probably mee t. So, they picked the wrong guy to abuse. He's like Shakespeare's wife; beyond reproach. But meanwhile, it's a yin and yang situation because he's got another sh-tty franchise that he can resurrect and make into a billion-dollar industry. Suicide Squad was unwatchable the first time around. James will take that and—it'll be like Rumpelstiltskin; he'll be spinning straw into gold."
After making disparaging comments about Donald Trump on Twitter, Gunn became the target of conservative bloggers who investigated his social media history, bringing to light comments the filmmaker made about rape and pedophilia early in his career. The attention these comments received led to Disney parting ways with the filmmaker, despite the comments having been made long before his involvement with the Marvel Cinematic Universe and having previously publicly apologized for them.
Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3 was ultimately delayed indefinitely as Disney seeks a new director to take over the series.
Interestingly, 2016's Suicide Squad drew heavy inspiration from Gunn's Guardians films, as both featured teams comprised of lesser-known characters and offered audiences a new perspective of the superhero realm. Unfortunately, Suicide Squad may have earned a big box office haul, but failed to impress critics the way Guardians did, making it one of the worst-reviewed films of the year. Warner Bros. is clearly hoping Gunn can bring his filmmaking skills to deliver audiences an ensemble film that rivals his MCU efforts.
Stay tuned for details about Suicide Squad 2.
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