Ian Patrick, FISM News
Although the Disney studio has been enjoying attention through their Star Wars and Marvel television shows exclusively available on their streaming platform, they are currently experiencing blowback from one of their biggest profitable assets: Marvel movies.
Shortly after the release of its newest project, “Black Widow,” Marvel actress Scarlett Johansson is suing the Disney studio for a supposed breach in contract.
The star of their latest superhero movie says that her contract has her earning payments based on box office sales in the theater, and Marvel assured that the movie would be exclusively released in theaters. The lawsuit alleges that Disney’s decision to release the film on their Disney+ streaming service at the same time it was in theaters took away from Johansson’s compensation.
Disney has reportedly replied to the lawsuit, calling it “sad and distressing” according to TechCrunch:
There is no merit whatsoever to this filing. The lawsuit is especially sad and distressing in its callous disregard for the horrific and prolonged global effects of the Covid-19 pandemic. Disney has fully complied with Ms. Johansson’s contract and furthermore, the release of Black Widow on Disney+ with Premier Access has significantly enhanced her ability to earn additional compensation on top of the $20M she has received to date.
One lawyer for Johansson say that Disney planned to release “Black Widow” on Disney+ alongside the theatrical release “to increase subscribers and thereby boost the company’s stock price,” according to an interview with Variety.
Ignoring the contracts of the artists responsible for the success of its films in furtherance of this short-sighted strategy violates their rights and we look forward to proving as much in court.