The director of Guardians of the Galaxy has backpedalled after hinting that a gay character is among the protagonists in the sequel.
James Gunn helmed the successful 2014 comic book blockbuster, which is focused on an ensemble of alien superheroes.
Ahead of the release of this month’s sequel the Galaxy Vol. 2, Gunn had teased that there might already be an LGBT character in the film.
He said: “Absolutely. I would love to be able to. We might have already done that. I say watch the movie. Check it out. See what you think.”
However, speaking to Digital Spy this week, Gunn conceded the second film doesn’t actually explore a gay character.
He said: “What I meant to say is this: There are a lot of gay people in the world. There are a lot of bisexual people in the world.
“There are a lot of characters in the MCU. We’ve barely gotten to know the sexuality of any of those characters.
“We know Gamora and Quill are interested in each other. That’s about the only sexual relationship that exists within the Guardians. We know Drax has a past with a wife so he’s got some sort of interest in women.
“But we don’t really know who’s gay and who’s not. It could be any of them.”
A same-sex romance for raccoon Rocket or giant tree Groot seems unlikely, somewhat narrowing the options.
However, there are several characters whose romantic lives were not explored in the original film, including villain Nebula (Karen Gillan) and outlaw Yondu (Michael Rooker).
Marvel recently rushed to quashed speculation that two warriors in the upcoming film Black Panther will be in a lesbian relationship.
Black Panther, to be released in February 2018, is about T’Challa, the superhero king and protector of fictional African nation Wakanda.
Early reports from the set had suggested the film will include lesbian characters, appearing to take inspiration from a comic released last year which explored a lesbian relationship.
Comic book spin-off World of Wakanda centred on the lesbian relationship between two members of the Black Panther’s female bodyguards. The book described itself as “a love story,” with “tenderness matched only by its brutality.”
However, a Marvel spokesperson reached out to clearly state that “the nature of the relationship between [the characters] in Black Panther is not a romantic one.”
The wrangling from Disney subsidiary Marvel comes after an infamous blink-and-you’ll-miss-it ‘gay moment’ in Disney blockbuster Beauty and the Beast.
The live-action remake was the first major Disney film to feature an unambiguously gay character, and smashed box office records despite an attempted evangelical boycott.
But in terms of an actual LGBT storyline, it disappointed fans.