The Last Jedi Director Rian Johnson has offered an explanation as to why he recently decided to delete roughly 20,000 old posts from his Twitter account. The move came just days after Disney fired James Gunn over offensive tweets, which were intended to be humorous but made light of topics such as child rape and 9/11, that were from as far back as ten years ago. Gunn will no longer direct Guardians of the Galaxy vol. 3 as a result and his firing has made waves. It also inspired Johnson to clean up his own Twitter timeline.
As we reported recently, Rian Johnson, who also works for Disney, by way of Lucasfilm, as director of The Last Jedi and the upcoming Star Wars trilogy he's developing, deleted the vast majority of content from his Twitter account. The Mary Sue tweeted out an article about Rian Johnson deleting the tweets, insinuating that he had something on his timeline to hide. Johnson responded, saying that isn't the case. Instead, it's got more to do with just playing it safe. Here's what he had to say about it.
"No official directive at all, and I don't think I've ever tweeted anything that bad. But it's nine years of stuff written largely off the cuff as ephemera, if trolls scrutinizing it for ammunition is the new normal, this seems like a 'why not?' move."
It's highly likely that many other filmmakers and people in the public eye are also cleaning out their proverbial Twitter closets in the wake of James Gunn's firing. Whether or not someone believes they have anything to hide seems to be beside the point, as Rian Johnson points out. Why bother taking any risks? Granted, there are still ways to access many of those old tweets, but it's an understandable precaution for someone like him to take.
James Gunn has received a ton of support from fans and those in the business in the wake of his firing. Millions of people adore the Guardians movies and he didn't seem to get all that much hate. However, while there are a ton of people who love The Last Jedi, it was an incredibly divisive movie and there is a small but very vocal sector of the fanbase that has gone after Rian Johnson and those involved in order to aggressively express their dissatisfaction. Kelly Marie Tran bailed on Instagram not long ago as a result of trolls relentlessly harassing her.
Point being, James Gunn was a filmmaker most people seemed to like and went down because conservative bloggers disagreed with his outspoken political views and decided to dig up whatever dirt they could. Johnson has a lot of haters and Disney has set a precedent that filmmakers with skeletons in their closet are at risk of being fired. Johnson doesn't want to be kicked off of his Star Wars trilogy because of some old tweet. It may look to some like he's hiding something, but it's hard not to understand the precaution being taken. You can check out the explanation from Rian Johnsons' Twitter for yourself below.
No official directive at all, and I don’t think I’ve ever tweeted anything that bad. But it’s nine years of stuff written largely off the cuff as ephemera, if trolls scrutinizing it for ammunition is the new normal, this seems like a “why not?” move.— Rian Johnson (@rianjohnson) July 25, 2018