The third entry in Marvel’s successful “Guardians of the Galaxy” series has been postponed as a new director is sought.
Fans will need to wait a bit longer for “Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3.”
Originally scheduled to begin production in January or February 2019, the sci-fi action comedy is now in temporary stasis as Disney searches for a new director.
James Gunn, who wrote and directed the 2014 and 2017 movies that added an oddball team of unlikely space saviors to the Marvel Cinematic Universe, was removed from his position on the franchise after a July 2018 controversy surrounding a number of bad taste jokes he made on Twitter between 2008 and 2011.
Franchise stars Chris Pratt, Zoe Saldana, Dave Bautista, Bradley Cooper and Karen Gillan had published a letter in support of the director, whose firing was understood to be the result of a smear campaign by opponents.
Nevertheless, Disney is continuing to pursue other options, telling a cadre of pre-production crew members that they can find other work in the interim, per The Hollywood Reporter, meaning that “Guardians” volume 3 is unlikely to arrive before 2021.
The original plan had filming to start early in 2019, though a release date had not yet been announced.
“Guardians of the Galaxy” made $773m USD worldwide on a $170m production budget, while its sequel cleared $863m on a $200m budget.
Both were among the top ten highest grossing theatrical releases in their respective years.