Author Chuck Wendig took to Twitter today to announce that Marvel has fired him from working on their Star Wars titles, which include the Shadow of Vader miniseries and an “as-yet-unannounced” comic. According to his tweets, the writing duties for the former series will be handed off to someone else.
Like many others, Wendig has been an outspoken critic of the current presidential administration, and he often vented his frustrations via social media. His profanity-laced tirades first garnered mainstream attention back in June and haven’t slowed at all since then. As Wendig tells it, the “negativity and vulgarity” displayed by his tweets are the primary impetus behind his firing, which he learned about by means of a phone call from Marvel editor Mark Paniccia.
“My understanding over this call was that this was a Marvel decision, not an [Lucasfilm Ltd.] decision, but I can’t really confirm that,” Wendig said via Twitter. “The editor said he had made the call. He seemed genuinely upset at my tweets and profanity, so maybe that’s accurate. And again, that’s his right to do so. If they honestly feel that my presence will damage the book, I don’t want that. I want the book to shine, and artists like Juanan Ramirez and Greg Smallwood to do their amazing thing. Artists like that are gods in my mind, so I’m happy to not distract from their literal magic.”
Wendig previously gained notoriety for including a gay character in the 2015 novel Star Wars: Aftermath, which filled in some of the gaps between 1983’s Return of the Jedi and 2015’s The Force Awakens. When this move generated backlash from a subset of Star Wars fans, the author penned a lengthy blog post hitting back at detractors, and he certainly didn’t mince words: “If you’re upset because I put gay characters and a gay protagonist in the book, I got nothing for you. Sorry, you squawking saurian — meteor’s coming. And it’s a fabulously gay Nyan Cat meteor with a rainbow trailing behind it and your mode of thought will be extinct. You’re not the Rebel Alliance. You’re not the good guys. You’re the f***ing Empire, man. You’re the s***ty, oppressive, totalitarian Empire.”
Wendig continued his thread today by acknowledging that his firing would likely be considered a win for the Comicsgate movement, which takes aim at any perceived instance of “forced diversity” in the comic book industry. Nevertheless, he offered one bit of parting wisdom for anyone still listening: “Vote in November like your life depends on it. Because it just might.”
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