We may have a new candidate to direct Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3 in the form of Travis Knight. Many Marvel fans probably don't know him by name, but Knight is the man behind the upcoming Transformers spin-off Bumblebee, who previously helmed the critically-acclaimed animated feature Kubo and the Two Strings. According to a new rumor, Knight is one of the names on the studio's list to replace James Gunn.
Before pressing forward we must caution that, for the time being, this should be regarded as nothing more than a rumor. Even the report that broke the news cautions as much. That said, the report claims that Travis Knight was being eyed for the job directing The Eternals movie, which is in development as part of the studio's future plans beyond Avengers 4. Apparently, assuming this has any truth to it, they liked Knight enough to consider handing him the keys to the Guardians franchise instead, which would arguably be a much greater responsibility and a far trickier task to take on. Before we get too ahead of ourselves, it's worth mentioning that reporter Umberto Gonzalez claims that there is no credibility to this rumor. Here's what he had to say on Twitter.
"That Travis Knight Guardians of the Galaxy Vol 3 rumor is not true. Just got shot down."
Despite that, Travis Knight certainly seems to fit the bill. While we haven't seen Bumblebee yet, early indication seems to be that this is a much-improved version of the Transformers universe. All five previous movies were helmed by Michael Bay, so Knight already knows what it's like to try and fill some big shoes. We had previously heard that Marvel was possibly eyeing several female directors for the Guardians 3 gig, such as S.J. Clarkson (Star Trek 4), Michelle MacLaren (Game of Thrones) and Dee Rees (Mudbound). There was also a large contingent of Marvel fans who wanted to see Thor: Ragnarok director Taika Waititi get the job.
Whatever the case, it serves as a nice reminder that this is a big job within the MCU that needs to be filled. James Gunn was fired over the summer by Disney after a series of old, offensive tweets joking about rape, pedophilia, 9/11, antisemitism and other unsavory topics resurfaced online. The Guardians cast, as well as many around Hollywood, stood up for Gunn and tried to get him reinstated. Recently, a re-hire James Gunn billboard even showed up near Disneyland. Despite that, Gunn remains fired and has since moved on to writing and possibly directing Suicide Squad 2 for Warner Bros.
James Gunn directed the first two movies to great success. Many Fans still love him and see this as his world. Any director who takes the job is going to be taking it on with the eyes of the world on them. That's a lot of pressure. Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3 was originally slated to begin production in January, but that's been delayed indefinitely as the search for a new director continues. This news was first reported by The DisInsider.