Robert Downey Jr and Mark Ruffalo have defended their Marvel co-star Chris Pratt after an internet challenge dubbed him 'the worst Chris'. Pratt's religious and alleged political beliefs are said to be the reason behind the backlash.
Tweets in which he was accused of belonging to a church that is anti-LGBTQ were doing the rounds over the weekend, which prompted his Guardians of the Galaxy director James Gunn to respond.
When one person commented that "he goes to a church that is openly homophobic," Gunn wrote back, "So do 98% of Christians, all Catholics, most Muslims & some Jews. I was a Catholic for years, hoping I could have a bigger impact working for gay rights from the inside. I eventually gave up. But it was a valid choice. & I applaud other non-bigots who do the same." He continued, "Chris himself has openly stated the church he attends doesn't reflect all of his personal views, and that he is a 'man who believes that everyone is entitled to love who they want'."
According to Entertainment Weekly, Pratt isn't vocal about his political views, but often talks about his religion. He has said that his church is one "that opens their doors to absolutely everyone" and that he is a man "who believes that everyone is entitled to love who they want free from the judgment of their fellow man".
Robert Downey Jr, who plays Iron Man in the Marvel films, wrote an Instagram post in defence of his 'brother'. "What a world... The 'sinless' are casting stones at my brother, Chris Pratt...," he wrote. Calling Pratt 'a real Christian who lives by principle', Downey wrote that the Guardians of the Galaxy actor "has never demonstrated anything but positivity and gratitude, and he just married into a family that makes space for civil discourse and (just plain fact) insists on service as the highest value."
He concluded, "If you take issue with Chris,,, I've got a novel idea. Delete your social media accounts, sit with your OWN defects of character, work on THEM, then celebrate your humanness..."
Actor Mark Ruffalo, who plays The Incredible Hulk in the MCU and is very vocal about his political beliefs, wrote in a tweet, "You all, @prattprattpratt is as solid a man there is. I know him personally, and instead of casting aspersions, look at how he lives his life. He is just not overtly political as a rule. This is a distraction. Let's keep our eyes on the prize, friends. We are so close now."
Pratt's wife, Katherine Schwarzenegger wrote in an Instagram response to a news story about her husband, "There's so much going on in the world and people are struggling in so many ways. Being mean is so yesterday. There's enough room to love all these guys. Love is what we all need not meanness and bullying. Let's try that."
The trend started on social media after filmmaker Amy Berg posted a picture of four actors named Chris -- Pratt, Hemsworth, Pine and Evans -- and asked which 'has to go'.