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James Gunn Reveals He “Legally” Can’t Work for Marvel Studios


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Summary

  • James Gunn is now fully committed to DC Studios and cannot legally write another movie for Marvel Studios.
  • Gunn’s focus is on the success of the upcoming DCU franchise, starting with the Creature Commandos animated series and Superman: Legacy movie.
  • The reception and success of Superman: Legacy will be a crucial factor in determining the future success of the DCU franchise, and Gunn’s track record may bode well for the film.


James Gunn seems to have reached the pinnacle of his long career in Hollywood, taking on the role of co-CEO at DC Studios as the next step beyond his time at Marvel Studios. However, it seems that anyone hoping for him to dip his toe back into the MCU in some way will be disappointed, as the Superman: Legacy writer-director has revealed that he “legally” cannot now return to the other side of the comic book coin.

Gunn’s journey began as a screenwriter on the Troma Entertainment movie Tromeo and Juliet in 1997, and as a director with 2006 horror movie Slither. He then took his first steps into the superhero genre with Super in 2010 before starting his Marvel journey with Guardians of the Galaxy in 2014. Now, after two further Guardians movies and his work on DC’s The Suicide Squad, Gunn’s future seems to be firmly set with DC, and it looks like there is no way back to Marvel.

Responding to a comment on his Threads account, Gunn revealed that he could not “physically or legally” write another movie for Marvel Studios. Although he does not elaborate further on this, it is clearly a sign that his focus is now completely on the success of the new DCU franchise that will begin with the upcoming Creature Commandos animated series and live-action movie, Superman: Legacy.

James gunn shares details about his DCU role on threads

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James Gunn Has a Lot Riding on the Success of His DCU

James Gunn on Superman's Public Domain Transition
DC Comics

The unveiling of the ‘Gods and Monsters’ slate by Gunn and Peter Safran in early 2023 offered a glimpse into the future of DC Studios. With the old DCEU having staggered to its conclusion last year, through the lackluster box offices of Shazam! Fury of the Gods, The Flash, and the slightly better result of Aquaman and the Lost Kingdom, there is clearly a lot of pressure on Gunn and Safran to revive the fortunes of the franchise. The array of projects, including high-profile films like The Brave and the Bold, Supergirl: Woman of Tomorrow, and Swamp Thing, alongside a host of Max exclusive TV shows including Wonder Woman series Paradise Lost.

Before all that, though, Superman: Legacy will be the first big challenge for the DCU, with Gunn at the helm as writer and director. The reception to the movie’s release in 2025, both in critical and commercial terms, will be a portent of the success the franchise can achieve in future – or a millstone to be carried around its neck. So far, the movie’s casting choices have been well received, and Gunn’s track record – including being the mind behind Marvel’s only hit movie of 2023 – bode well for the film, but only time will tell how that pans out.

Gunn’s exclusive allegiance to DC Studios certainly suggests that the franchise will be getting his full attention, and that can only be a positive influence over the DC universe after its lack of leadership over the last decade since the departure of Zack Snyder in 2017. Despite its recent issues, the Marvel Cinematic Universe maintained the integrity of the Infinity Saga through the overseeing eye of Kevin Feige, and with Gunn now taking on a similar role at DC Studios, the franchise can look forward to an interesting, and hopefully successful future.

Creature Commandos is expected to be released later this year on Max. Superman: Legacy will be released in theaters on July 11, 2025.

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