James Gunn is back.
Disney has reinstated Gunn as writer and director of Guardians of the Galaxy 3, ET confirms. Deadline was first to report the news.
“I am tremendously grateful to every person out there who has supported me over the past few months. I am always learning and will continue to work at being the best human being I can be,” Gunn wrote in a statement on Twitter on Friday. “I deeply appreciate Disney’s decision and I am excited to continue making films that investigate the ties of love that bind us all.”
“I have been, and continue to be, incredibly humbled by your love and support,” he added. “From the bottom of my heart, thank you. Love to you all.”
The news comes eight months after Gunn was fired from the Marvel film by Disney in July after controversial jokes he made nearly a decade ago were resurfaced on Twitter. Shortly after his firing, Gunn apologized, while the Guardians cast — including Chris Pratt, Zoe Saldana, Bradley Cooper, Vin Diesel, Dave Bautista and more — expressed their support for Gunn in an open letter, asking that he be reinstated as director.
The cast’s statement read in part: “The character [Gunn] has shown in the wake of his firing is consistent with the man he was every day on set, and his apology, now and from years ago when first addressing these remarks, we believe is from the heart, a heart we all know, trust, and love. In casting each of us to help him tell the story of misfits who find redemption, he changed our lives forever. We believe the theme of redemption has never been more relevant than now. Each of us looks forward to working with our friend James again in the future. His story isn’t over – not by a long shot.”
Guardians 3 was supposed to go into pre-production in the fall, with principal photography to begin in the winter. However, the Hollywood Reporter revealed in August that the movie’s timeline had been altered, and that crew members preparing for pre-production had been dismissed.
In the midst of the controversy, Gunn scored a new gig, as writer and director of the sequel to DC’s Suicide Squad. See more in the video below.