Friday 18 August 2017

Guardians Of The Galaxy director James Gunn had 'suicidal thoughts' as a young man

He said he eventually found solace in comics and music.

By Laura Harding

Guardians Of The Galaxy director James Gunn has said he contemplated suicide as a young man until he found comfort in pop culture.

The filmmaker, whose sequel to the Marvel movie has enjoyed one of the biggest box office openings of the year, said he felt “utterly alone” as a young person.

In a long and emotional Facebook post, he wrote: “As we open up around the world, I would be lying if I said I don’t get distracted by the numbers.

“The first thing I do in the morning is roll over in bed and check my phone for the morning box office reports.

“But in the end, it’s not what matters to me. I write this now to let you know, but also to remind myself. Because I’m human and I sometimes forget.

“When I was young I felt utterly alone, at times to the point of suicidal thoughts.

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“I never felt like I belonged, had an incredibly difficult time connecting to other people and, despite having love around me, I had an impossible time experiencing it, or taking it in.

“But I found my respite in popular entertainment – Marvel comics, science fiction and horror films, the music of The Sex Pistols, The Replacements and Queen.

“Suddenly I could see past the bland suburbs where I lived into a more magical world, a world more aligned with what I imagined.

“Sometimes these works were simply escapist fantasies that distracted me from the difficulties of my internal life.

“But other times, in the strongest moments – maybe through the words of Alice Cooper or Freddie Mercury, through Cronenberg films, or even in Chewbacca’s growl, I experienced something deeper – the realisation that I wasn’t completely alone.

“Someone out there was as weird and strange and whacked out as I was.”

James said it is important to remember the focus on how much money Guardians Of The Galaxy Vol. 2 makes is all “nonsense and noise”.

He continued: “No matter how much world leaders are telling you we aren’t in this together, we are. You are not alone.”

Press Association

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