The Kiwi filmmaker was thought to have been in the running to helm the now rudderless film franchise after Gunn (who wrote and directed the previous two instalments) was removed in July 2018 after the highlighting of a series of offensive tweets sent between 2008 and 2011.
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Speaking at the Television Critics Association’s winter press tour ahead of the launch of the television adaptation of his 2014 film What We Do in the Shadows, Waititi gave a typically colourful answer as to why he would feel uncomfortable in doing so.
“For me, those are James’ films,” he said. “Going into something like that with his stamp all over his films, would be like going into someone’s house and saying ‘Hey, I’m your new dad, and this is how we make peanut butter sandwiches now.’ It feels kind of awkward.”
Guardians 3 has been in limbo since Gunn left the film. He has since been revealed as the front-runner to write and direct a reboot of DC’s Suicide Squad.
Earlier this month, Chris Pratt assured fans that the third movie will go ahead as planned, though he’s not sure how just yet:
“I promise there’ll be a third movie,” he told Variety at the Lego Movie 2 premiere.
“I don’t know exactly what that’s going to look like, but I know everyone on board is just eager to give the fans what they want and wrap up a trilogy in a meaningful way.”