The Hollywood Reporter broke the news on Saturday that Disney has pushed back against Scarlett Johansson’s lawsuit against the House of Mouse, pushing for an arbitrator to get involved.
For those of you unaware the star of Black Widow and Avengers is suing the company for allegedly breaking her contract and preventing revenue from the star by the Disney Plus and theatrical release of which she wasn’t consulted around.
The Hollywood star earns a percentage as a bonus for her salary dependent upon Black Widow reaching certain box office milestones which she alleges was unfairly prohibited as a result of Disney Plus.
Saw the opportunity to promote its flagship subscription service.
Stating that Disney “saw the opportunity to promote its flagship subscription service” and cutting her out of millions of dollars in the process.
However what’s interesting is her contract was with Marvel Entertainment, not directly Disney (who of course owns Marvel Entertainment) and alleges that Disney forced Marvel to keep her out of the deal.
In Disney’s response, they give away some informative information about how successful Black Widow was.
In the US it saw over 9,000 screens theatrically, which was against a contracted 1,500, however, Scarlett’s camp rebute this stating it was an exclusive agreement for theatrical release.
The film took an estimated $365+million worldwide and is still playing in theatres across the US, Europe and UK.
Disney also gives away that the film grossed an estimated $125m on streaming platforms that we understand Scarlett has seen some income from this as Disney states “the decision to credit [Scarlett] with streaming and download receipts, [she] was dissatisfied.”
Her argument is that her contract was for an exclusive theatrical release, and as such she’s lost out on a huge source of revenue as the film also went directly onto Disney Plus on-demand, and potentially kept people away from theatres.
What Happens Between Scarlett Johansson And Disney Now?
Arbitration is an attempt (and usually successful in previous lawsuits) by Disney to avoid court and brings an independent party into the equation to make an agreement.
Now, this doesn’t come without its costs as whatever agreement or compensation is made, usually, the arbitrator will take a cut and from the person suing. In this case Scarlett Johannson.
Will it be successful?
Only time will tell, potentially depending upon the legal understanding and terminology in the contract Scarlett Johannson could stand to gain heavily, but Disney is a hugely successful company in the court system and has a lot of influence and money to spend.
What do you make of this news?
Let us know your thoughts in the comments below.
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