'Guardians of the Galaxy' cast defends James Gunn - Silver Screen Beat
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‘Guardians of the Galaxy’ cast members sign open letter in support of director James Gunn

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Guardians Cast
CHARLIE GRAY

More than a week after it was announced that Disney had fired James Gunn as the director of Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3 after a series of offensive, decade-old tweets began to resurface online, the Guardians cast has published an open letter in support of the filmmaker.

Chris Pratt, Zoe Saldana, Dave Bautista, Bradley Cooper, Vin Diesel, Karen Gillan, Sean Gunn, Pom Klementieff, and Michael Rooker all signed the letter, which does not explicitly call for the reinstatement of Gunn but rather speaks to his character and the kind of person he was on set.

Guardians 3 was expected to begin shooting in Atlanta this fall and was dated for a 2020 release. In a statement issued after his firing, Gunn said that he understood and accepted “the business decisions taken” and that he takes “full responsibility for the way I conducted myself then.”

You can read the open letter from the Guardians of the Galaxy cast in its entirety below.

To our fans and friends:

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’ve 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 so easily duped into believing the many outlandish conspiracy theories surrounding him.

Being in the Guardians of the Galaxy movies has been a great honor in each of our lives. We cannot let this moment pass without expressing our love, support, and gratitude for James. We are not here to defend his jokes of many years ago but rather to share out experience having spent many years together on set making Guardians of the Galaxy 1 and 2. The character he has shown in the wake of his firing is consistent with the man he was every day on set, and his apology, now and from years ago when first addressing these remarks, we believe is from the heart, a heart we all know, trust, and love. In casting each of us to help him tell the story of misfits who find redemption, he changed our lives forever. We believe the theme of redemption has never been more relevant than now.

Each of us looks forward to working with our friend James again in the future. His story isn’t over–not by a long shot.

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 the character assassinations and stop weaponizing mob mentality.

It is our hope that what has transpired can serve as an example for all of us to realize the enormous responsibility we have to ourselves and to each other regarding the use of our written words when we etch them in the digital stone; that we as a society may learn from this experience and in the future will think twice before we decide what we want to express; and in so learning perhaps can harness this capability to help and heal instead of hurting each other. Thank you for taking this time to read our words.

The Guardians of the Galaxy,

Chris Pratt, Zoe Saldana, Dave Bautista, Karen Gillan, Bradley Cooper, Sean Gunn, Vin Diesel, Pom Klementieff, Michael Rooker

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2019 SAG Awards nominations revealed: See the complete list of this year’s nominees

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A Star Is Born Shallow SAG Screen Actors Guild Awards
WARNER BROS.

Awkwafina and Laverne Cox were on hand to announce nominees for the 25th Annual Screen Actors Guild Awards for outstanding individual, cast, and ensemble performances in film and television of 2018 at the Pacific Design Center’s SilverScreen Theater in Hollywood on Tuesday morning.

Lady Gaga and Bradley Cooper’s hit remake of A Star Is Born picked up the most film nominations with four nods, including Best Actor for Cooper, Best Actress for Gaga, Best Supporting Actor for Sam Elliott, and Best Ensemble.

The Favourite, BlackKklansman, and Vice also picked up a number of nominations on the film side, while The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel, Ozark, The Handmaid’s Tale, and The Assassination of Gianni Versace: American Crime Story dominated the television side.

The 25th Annual SAG Awards ceremony, which does not yet have a confirmed host, will be simulcast live on TNT and TBS on Sunday, January 27 at 8 p.m. ET/5 p.m. PT.

The complete list of nominees is below:

Theatrical Motion Picture nominees

Outstanding Performance by a Male Actor in a Leading Role
Christian Bale, Vice
Bradley Cooper, A Star Is Born
Rami Malek, Bohemian Rhapsody
Viggo Mortensen, Green Book
John David Washington, BlacKkKlansman

Outstanding Performance by a Female Actor in a Leading Role
Emily Blunt, Mary Poppins Returns
Glenn Close, The Wife
Olivia Colman, The Favourite
Lady Gaga, A Star Is Born
Melissa McCarthy, Can You Ever Forgive Me?

Outstanding Performance by a Male Actor in a Supporting Role
Mahershala Ali, Green Book
Timothee Chalamet, Beautiful Boy
Adam Driver, BlacKkKlansman
Sam Elliott, A Star Is Born
Richard E. Grant, Can You Ever Forgive Me?

Outstanding Performance by a Female Actor in a Supporting Role
Amy Adams, Vice
Emily Blunt, A Quiet Place
Margot Robbie, Mary, Queen of Scots
Emma Stone, The Favourite
Rachel Weisz, The Favourite

Outstanding Performance by a Cast in a Motion Picture
A Star Is Born
Black Panther
BlacKkKlansman
Bohemian Rhapsody
Crazy Rich Asians

Outstanding Performance by a Stunt Ensemble in a Motion Picture
Ant-Man and the Wasp
Avengers: Infinity War
The Ballad of Buster Scruggs
Black Panther
Mission: Impossible — Fallout

Television nominees

Outstanding Performance by a Male Actor in a Miniseries or TV Movie
Antonio Banderas, Genius
Darren Criss, The Assassination of Gianni Versace: American Crime Story
Hugh Grant, A Very English Scandal
Antony Hopkins, King Lear
Bill Pullman, The Sinner

Outstanding Performance by a Female Actor in a Miniseries or TV Movie
Amy Adams, Sharp Objects
Patricia Arquette, Escape at Dannamora
Patricia Clarkson, Sharp Objects
Penelope Cruz, The Assassination of Gianni Versace: American Crime Story
Emma Stone, Maniac

Outstanding Performance by a Male Actor in a Drama Series
Jason Bateman, Ozark
Sterling K. Brown, This Is Us
Joseph Feinnes, The Handmaid’s Tale
John Krasinski, Tom Clancy’s Jack Ryan
Bob Odenkirk, Better Call Saul

Outstanding Performance by a Female Actor in a Drama Series
Julia Garner, Ozark
Laura Linney, Ozark
Elisabeth Moss, The Handmaid’s Tale
Sandra Oh, Killing Eve
Robin Wright, House of Cards

Outstanding Performance by a Female Actor in a Comedy Series
Alex Borstein, The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel
Alison Brie, G.L.O.W.
Rachel Brosnahan, The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel
Jane Fonda, Grace & Frankie
Lily Tomlin, Grace & Frankie

Outstanding Performance by a Male Actor in a Comedy Series
Alan Arkin, The Kominsky Method
Michael Douglas, The Kominsky Method
Bill Hader, Barry
Tony Shalhoub, The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel
Henry Winkler, Barry

Outstanding Performance by an Ensemble in a Drama Series
The Americans
Better Call Saul
The Handmaid’s Tale
Ozark
This Is Us

Outstanding Performance by an Ensemble in a Comedy Series
Atlanta
Barry
G.L.O.W.
The Kominsky Method
The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel

Outstanding Performance by a Stunt Ensemble in a Television Series
Daredevil
G.L.O.W.
Tom Clancy’s Jack Ryan
The Walking Dead
Westworld

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Scott Derrickson set to return to the director’s chair for Marvel’s ‘Doctor Strange’ sequel

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Doctor Strange Scott Derrickson
MARVEL STUDIOS

With Avengers: Endgame officially on the horizon, Marvel has quietly begun to put the pieces together for what’s to come after the eagerly awaited next chapter in the Marvel Cinematic Universe hits theaters next April, which means finally getting plans for a Doctor Strange sequel on the drawing board.

According to The Hollywood Reporter, Scott Derrickson, who co-wrote and directed the original Doctor Strange film in 2016, has finalized a deal to helm its sequel, which will see Benedict Cumberbatch reprise his role as the titular mystical superhero.

While no writers are attached to the Doctor Strange sequel quite yet, a source with insider knowledge tells Silver Screen Beat that Marvel is eyeing Jon Spaihts and C. Robert Cargill, who co-wrote the original along with Derrickson, to begin working on a script.

THR also reports that Marvel isn’t expected to get production on the Doctor Strange sequel underway until at least early 2020, meaning the film likely won’t hit theaters until around mid-2021 or possibly even later in the year.

Also set to return for the sequel is Benedict Wong, who plays Wong, a master of the mystic arts and Stephen Strange’s right-hand man, and Rachel McAdams, who plays Christine Palmer, an emergency surgeon and Strange’s love interest.

Marvel had no comment on the news.

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Phoenix readers: Enter to win passes to an advance screening of ‘Bumblebee’ next week

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Bumblebee
PARAMOUNT PICTURES

Paramount Pictures will release Bumblebee, the upcoming Transformers prequel, on December 21 and they’re giving Silver Screen Beat readers in Phoenix a chance to attend an advance screening of the film before it officially opens in theaters.

Our readers in the Phoenix area can click on this link right now to enter to win passes (good for you and one guest) to an advance screening of Bumblebee happening Tuesday, December 18 at Harkins Tempe Marketplace at 6:30 p.m.

The sweepstakes have already begun and winners only will be notified by Monday, December 17 at 6 a.m. local time. Good luck! Below is the official trailer for Bumblebee as well as some additional details about the film.

Directed by: Travis Knight

Cast: Hailee Steinfeld, John Cena, Jorge Lendeborg Jr., John Ortiz, Jason Drucker, Pamela Adlon, and Stephen Schneider

Opens: Friday, December 21

Rating: PG-13 for sequences of sci-fi action violence

Synopsis: On the run in the year 1987, Bumblebee finds refuge in a junkyard in a small Californian beach town. Charlie (Hailee Steinfeld), on the cusp of turning 18 and trying to find her place in the world, discovers Bumblebee, battle-scarred and broken. When Charlie revives him, she quickly learns this is no ordinary, yellow VW bug.

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