Scarlett Johansson Sues Disney Over Black Widow Release

Scarlett Johansson, the star of the Avengers and the recent Black Widow film has filed a lawsuit this past week in LA against Disney.

The lawsuit alleges that Walt Disney Pictures breached her contract and changed the agreed terms by releasing the film on both streaming platforms and in theatres.

The suit states further that the agreement between Disney and Marvel was broken.

Stating the contract “guaranteed”; an exclusive theatrical release, i.e., cinemas only.

The kicker for Johansson also comes from the fact her salary massively was based upon the box office performance, similar to deals Tom Cruise, Robert Downey Jr, and Will Smith enact for multiple films.

The set-up means the actors get percentages based on the box office gross, the more a film makes, the more they make, and for some actors they can make upwards of $20-50m+ from box office gross deals alone.

Scarlett Johansson is suing Disney for intentionally breaching the terms of their agreement

Scarlett Johansson as Black Widow in the film's first trailer

Credit: Marvel Studios

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The suit states:

Disney intentionally induced Marvel’s breach of the agreement, without justification, in order to prevent Ms. Johannsson from realizing the full benefit of her bargain with Marvel.

We saw legal action begin to form last year when Warner Bros. Pictures and HBO Max set up their own day and date streaming/theatrical release deal which saw them not contact directors, crew or producers about the move first.

Christopher Nolan, a long time Warner Bros. partner was very vocal about his anger at the move.

They were threatened with legal action from Legendary Pictures and settled this before it got that far, along with other artists for a rumoured $200-250m.

Dune is also a film that drew huge criticism for its planned day and date release and it appears they are also backing down on this as we reported earlier in the year:

Read more: Warner Brothers-HBO streaming plan in jeopardy

One thing is for sure, this might not be the last of this lawsuit that we hear or the last we see of other Hollywood stars taking legal action against the studios.

What do you think of the news?

Will we see more lawsuits? Is Scarlett Johansson right to try and sue Disney?

Let us know in the comments below!


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