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Scarlett Johansson is suing Disney over the release of 'Black Widow.'


Scarlett Johansson is suing Disney over the release of Black Widow
Charley Gallay/Getty Images for Netflix

Scarlett Johansson's lawsuit against Disney, the proprietors of Marvel, became public on July 29. According to the lawsuit, Scarlett's remuneration for the picture Black Widow, which was originally intended for a theatrical release but was eventually released in theaters and streaming on Disney+, was largely determined by box office performance. She feels that the dual distribution breached the terms of the company's contract with her, potentially resulting in losses of up to $50 million.

When Scarlett's reps learned of the dual release plans, they contacted Marvel. They were informed at the time that it would be a theatrical release exclusively and that they would be contacted if that changed.

Black Widow earned $158 million in cinemas globally, but an additional $60 million in home sales from the Disney+ release, which cost subscribers an extra $30. According to Insider, Disney believes Scarlett's case is without merit and is "particularly sad and heartbreaking in its callous disdain for the devastating and sustained worldwide repercussions of the COVID-19 pandemic."

Scarlett's attorney, John Berlinski, claims that not only was her contract broken, but Disney utilized the film "to gain subscribers and so raise the company's stock price." Disney claims Scarlett was paid $20 million for the film in accordance with her contract.

The lawsuit might result in significant changes in the entertainment industry. Actors in many films that are expected to be box office smashes are compensated based on box office numbers. Some argue that if movies are to be released on streaming platforms instead of or in addition to cinemas, performers should be compensated upfront.