James Gunn will no longer be appearing during Sony's panel at San Diego Comic-Con. The Guardians of the Galaxy director had been teasing his participation at the studio's panel, which takes place at the event tonight, prior to the weekend. However, Gunn has since come under fire for a series of offensive, old tweets that resulted in him being fired by Disney from Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3. Sony followed suit by removing the filmmaker from their SDCC plans.

A series of posts made to James Gunn's Twitter account years ago recently resurfaced after being dug up by conservative bloggers. "The best thing about being raped is when you're done being raped and it's like 'whew this feels great, not being raped,'" reads one of the tweets. Gunn has since apologized for his old remarks but his apology didn't do anything to help his status with Disney or Sony. Gunn also released a statement saying that he understood the business decisions being made and once again apologized for his remarks.

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Little to nothing was known about what James Gunn was cooking up with Sony. The studio is set to showcase footage from Tom Hardy's Venom movie and the animated Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse. Gunn isn't involved in either of those movies in any capacity, so it seems likely they were going to make an announcement about a future project. Since Marvel Studios is skipping out on their Hall H presentation this year, Gunn didn't have any Marvel-related reasons to be at San Diego Comic-Con. Whatever the project was, odds are, it's going to be scrapped entirely in the wake of the controversy. At the very least, Gunn won't be involved.

James Gunn got his start directing indie movies such as Slither and Super, as well as writing movies like the Dawn of the Dead remake and the live-action Scooby-Doo. His career changed dramatically when he was tapped by Marvel to direct Guardians of the Galaxy, which went on to become a massive success. He followed that up with Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 last year, which was also a tremendous commercial success. The two movies made a combined $1.6 billion at the box office and helped to expand the scope of the Marvel Cinematic Universe.

Disney chairman Alan Horn said, "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," in a statement. The studio did not announce a replacement director for Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3 after Disney fired James Gunn, which is, or at least was, scheduled to go into production this January. Gunn recently completed work on the movie's script.

Sony didn't release a statement in regards to not having James Gunn participated in their SDCC panel. Since it was probably for a surprise announcement, it's likely they will just ignore it entirely and move on with everything else as planned for their presentation. This news comes to us courtesy of Vareity.

Ryan Scott at Movieweb
Ryan Scott