Disney 'misogyny' is exposed in Scarlett Johansson's lawsuit
by | Thu, 26 Aug 2021 10:01:57 GMT
Image Source : Reddit

There is currently a heated legal dispute between Scarlett Johansson and Disney over the simultaneous release (in theaters and on streaming) of her standalone Marvel movie Black Widow, which allegedly resulted in her losing about $50 million in bonuses.

Using the same model as Mulan, Raya and the Last Dragon, and Cruella, Disney released Black Widow on Premiere Access, Disney's PVOD service

Disney - which owns Marvel - has been at odds with Johansson over the release of Black Widow to Disney+ simultaneously with its theatrical release, claiming it violated their contract and severely limited her earning potential.

On July 29, the new mom filed a lawsuit against Netflix, and the following day, media giant lawyers responded, accusing Scarlett of irresponsible behavior and insisting they made a safe decision when they released the movie on that platform.

She seems to have fought against Disney hard for a hybrid release, as Black Widow in the Marvel Cinematic Universe doesn't hold back in a fight either.

Johansson’s lawyer John Berlinski said, as per Deadline, “After initially responding to this litigation with a misogynistic attack against Scarlett Johansson, Disney is now, predictably, trying to hide its misconduct in a confidential arbitration.”

Legal representatives for Disney are now pressing for a private hearing in New York on Oct. 15, seeking to settle the issue behind closed doors. On Friday, they filed a final request with LA Superior Court.

Scarlett Johansson's lawyer John Berlinski told Deadline that Disney has tried "to hide its misconduct in an arbitration agreement, as expected, after initially responding to this litigation with a misogynistic attack against the actress."

"In what way is Disney so anxious to avoid litigating in public? Because they understand that Marvel's promises that Black Widow would have a generic theatrical release 'like its other films' have everything to do with making sure Disney wouldn't sabotage its box office returns.But you can bet it happened in exactly the same manner - and we will be able to prove this overwhelming evidence soon."

Several media conglomerate representatives have insisted that per the parties' original contract, which was apparently negotiated by entertainment representatives at a company called Periwinkle on Scarlett's behalf, any controversy arising from these partnerships will be decided by arbitration.

The motion states, "Periwinkle agreed to submit to confidential, binding arbitration all claims concerning Scarlett Johansson's acting services for Black Widow...," the court documents state in part.

Periwinkle substituted instead Marvel's parent company Disney under contract-interference theories in order to avoid this unavoidable result (and generate publicity). 

The studio has also blazed back at the actress for saying she was assured "an exclusive theater release" for Black Widow after previously disclosing she received $20 million upfront.

She can now earn additional compensation on top of the $20 million she has already earned." This means she can now earn more compensation based on the release of Black Widow on Disney Plus with Premier Access."

A Deadline report states that Scarlett's original contract does not include a slice of Black Widow's streaming revenue.