More than 240,000 people want Guardians director James Gunn back

More than 240,000 people have signed a petition for Disney to rehire Guardians Of The Galaxy franchise director James Gunn, who also garnered celebrity support just days after he was axed over a series of offensive tweets.

"I'm smart enough to know this most likely won't change anything but hopefully, this could get Disney to realise the mistake they made and not do it again in the future," said a person named Chandler Edwards, who launched the petition on

"I agree on the point that if people say a bunch of stupid s*** while working for a studio, the studio has full right to fire him over the possible controversy.

"This situation is very different, though, as he made these jokes years before he was working for Disney and also the fact that they were jokes."

Edwards argued that if Gunn was being punished by being removed from the third instalment in the popular series, "you have to do it for all the other directors who have said some crappy joke sometime in their life, which is all of them".

The tweets, mainly from 2008 and 2011, joked about topics such as rape and paedophilia.

US film-maker Gunn, 51, has been an outspoken critic of US President Donald Trump and has drawn the ire of conservative critics, who went back through his timeline and dug up the tweets. - AFP