Renowned actress Scarlett Johannsson filed a lawsuit against Disney in the Los Angeles Superior court for allegedly breaching her contract regarding the release of her superhero film “Black Widow” on the streaming app, Disney+.
According to the reports, the film was released in the theaters and the streaming service simultaneously which broke the clause of the contract between the actress and Disney.
The lawsuit allegedly claims that Scarlett Johansson had agreed to get her salary for the movie based upon the box office’s income. The suit states “to maximize the receipt, and thereby protect her financial interests, Ms. Johansson extracted a promise from Marvel that the release of the picture would be a ‘theatrical release’.”
However, the actress’s representative claimed that Disney violated the contract and released the exclusive movie on its streaming application Disney+ simultaneously along with its theatrical release.
In response to the alleged lawsuit, Disney responded that it complied completely with the contract of Scarlett Johansson, moreover, the release of Black Widow on the streaming application will only enhance her earning, allowing her to attain an additional compensation on top of the $20 million she will be receiving from the release in the theatrical avenues.
Streaming has become one of the pivotal ways of business for movies and drama series during pandemic situations. It has accelerated the business and has allowed the filmmakers and businessmen to gain back some relief in the form of revenue as the movie theaters were hit adversely due to the coronavirus pandemic.
The much-anticipated superhero flick “Black Widow” was originally supposed to release in May 2020 but it was delayed numerous times because of the COVID-19. Disney had announced plans to release the movie in the theaters as well as on Disney+ for its premium subscribers with extra charge at the same time.
The attorney representing Scarlett Johansson, John Berlinski stated that “it’s no secret that Disney is releasing films like Black Widow directly onto Disney+ to increase subscribers and thereby boost the company’s stock price, which they intend to do by hiding behind COVID-19 as a pretext”. He further claimed that it solely depends upon the company to honor its legal obligations and contracts with the stars and no matter whatever the circumstances are, the company should not keep the stars in the dark; after all, it’s the stars that boost their business.