The actress claims that Disney was in breach of contract but the company says otherwise.
One of Disney's biggest stars is taking them to court. Scarlett Johansson has been on the receiving end of harsh criticisms over her Black Widow film, but that isn't the biggest gripe she has with the mega-company. According to reports, Johansson has accused Disney of being in breach of contract because they decided to stream her film on Disney+ when it opened in theaters.
CNN reports that the bulk of Johansson's salary from Black Widow would be pulled from what was made at the box office but because it was available online, that amount would suffer a hit.
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"To maximize these receipts, and thereby protect her financial interests, Ms. Johansson extracted a promise from Marvel that the release of the picture would be a 'theatrical release,'" the suit reportedly states. "As Ms. Johansson, Disney, Marvel, and most everyone else in Hollywood knows, a 'theatrical release' is a release that is exclusive to movie theatres. Disney was well aware of this promise, but nonetheless directed Marvel to violate its pledge and instead release the picture on the Disney+ streaming service the very same day it was released in movie theatres."
Disney reportedly responded to the suit, stating that "there is no merit whatsoever to this filing. They called the lawsuit "especially sad and distressing in its callous disregard for the horrific and prolonged global effects of the COVID-19 pandemic." A spokesperson for the company added, "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 $20 million she has received to date."
Johansson has previously stated that she doesn't have any plans to return to the big screen as the Marvel character.