Actor Chris Pratt and his “Guardians of the Galaxy” co-stars have released a letter voicing their support for the franchise’s recently fired director James Gunn.
While the letter notes Gunn’s past jokes were “inappropriate,” Pratt and his fellow cast members agreed he is “a good man” worthy of a second chance:
We fully support James Gunn. We were all shocked by his abrupt firing last week and have intentionally waited these ten days to respond in order to think, pray, listen, and discuss. In that time we have been encouraged by the outpouring of support from fans and members of the media who wish to see James reinstated as director of Volume 3, as well as discouraged by those who were so easily duped into believing the many outlandish conspiracy theories around him.
Pratt first posted the letter to Instagram on Monday afternoon. In addition to Pratt, the petition is signed by actors Bradley Cooper, Zoe Saldana, Vin Diesel, Dave Bautista, Karen Gillan, Michael Rooker, Sean Gunn and Pom Klementieff.
Gunn was abruptly fired July 20 after his old tweets joking about pedophilia and rape were unearthed by far-right bloggers Mike Cernovich and Jack Posobiec.
The “Guardians” cast made clear they are “not here to defend his jokes of many years ago,” but want people to understand their relationships with Gunn, having “having spent many years together on set.”
“His story isn’t over — not by a long shot,” the actors stated. “There is little due process in the court of public opinion. James is likely not the last good person to be put on trial. Given the growing political divide in this country, it’s safe to say instances like this will continue, although we hope Americans from across the political spectrum can ease up on character assassinations and stop weaponizing mob mentality.”
In the immediate aftermath of Gunn’s firing, Pratt took to Twitter to share a Bible verse, once again calling attention to his Christian faith. He posted James 1:19, which reads, “Understand this, my dear brothers and sisters. Let every person be quick to listen, slow to speak, slow to anger.”
Pratt’s tweet was widely assumed to be a response to Gunn’s ouster.