Marvel Studios

While the entire "Guardians of the Galaxy" cast has thrown its support behind fired director James Gunn, no one has been more vocal in his defense than Dave Bautista, who plays Drax. Now, the actor is ready to put his money where his mouth is, and is prepared to leave the franchise entirely if Disney doesn't do right (at least partially) by the writer-director.

In an interview with ShortList, Bautista discussed his shock at Gunn's abrupt dismissal, which occurred after alt-right activists dug up a bunch of the director's old, offensive tweets, many of which joked about subjects like pedophilia and rape. According to the actor, the content of those social media posts isn't the issue.

“Nobody’s defending his tweets, but this was a smear campaign on a good man,” Bautista told ShortList. “I spoke to Chris Pratt the day after it happened and he’s a bit religious so he wanted time to pray and figure it out, but I was more like: f*ck this. This is bullsh*t. James is one of the kindest, most decent people I’ve met.”

The rest of the "Guardians" cast agreed with that sentiment, signing a joint statement in support of Disney re-hiring Gunn. While industry insiders say that that's unlikely to happen, Bautista told ShortList that at the very least, "Guardians 3" needs to keep the script that Gunn had just finished writing, in order for the actor to remain a part of the franchise.

“Where I’m at right now is that if [Marvel] don’t use that script, then I’m going to ask them to release me from my contract, cut me out or recast me," the actor said. “I’d be doing James a disservice if I didn’t.”

Right now, Disney is reportedly searching for an A-list director to take Gunn's place. Sounds like they better have a plan for replacing Bautista, too.

[via: ShortList]