James Gunn is coming to the defense of his Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3 villain High Evolutionary, played by Chukwudi Iwuji.
On Monday, the new co-head of DC Studios posted a picture of Iwuji in character on the set of his upcoming Marvel film and captioned it, “Can’t wait for you all to meet this guy.”
An Instagram user left a lengthy comment on Gunn’s photo, stating, “Damnit… another white guy they made into a black guy. Why couldn’t they just leave him white or i dont know…pick a different minority? How about Asian or gasp! A Latino? (how many Latinos and Asians in MCU? Like total of 5??) Or make him an Indian or something… because they don’t and won’t, that makes them ‘woke.’”
The user continued, “Next time, a major character (hero/villain)will be a trans or homosexual or non-binary (when in comics they are not). Sad and pathetic. They’re picking based on race and whats PC and not on acting and what’s established.”
Gunn fired back, writing, “I chose the best actor, period, and the best person for the role. I don’t give a shit what ethnicity @chukwudi_iwuji is, so stop with your racist presumptions on WHY he was chosen. (And, by the way, he’s playing a guy who’s almost always purple in the color.)”
Gunn previously worked with Iwuji in Peacemaker, the HBO Max series that spun off from The Suicide Squad.
Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3 marks the final installment of the franchise and Gunn’s final project at Marvel, as he now heads up DC Studios alongside Peter Safran. The film hits theaters May 5 and stars Chris Pratt, Zoe Saldaña, Dave Bautista, Karen Gillan, Pom Klementieff, Sean Gunn, Bradley Cooper, Vin Diesel and Will Poulter.