Scarlett Johansson Sues Disney Over ‘Black Widow’ Release

Scarlett Johansson Sues Disney Over ‘Black Widow’ Release
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Scarlett Johansson Sues Disney Over ‘Black Widow’ Release

Scarlett Johansson Sues Disney Over ‘Black Widow’ Release

Disney, citing the current threat of coronaviruses, has finally decided to release several major films simultaneously in theaters and on Disney + Premier Access. He used the strategy in May for “Cruella,” which starred Emma Stone and grossed $ 221 million worldwide. (Disney has kept Disney + revenues a secret for “Cruella.”) On Friday, Disney will be giving the same treatment to “The Jungle Cruise,” a comedy adventure starring Emily Blunt and Dwayne Johnson. It is not known whether Ms Stone, Ms Blunt or Mr Johnson renegotiated their contracts with Disney as a result.

In December, WarnerMedia launched a hornet’s nest by abruptly announcing that more than a dozen Warner Bros. movies. – the studio’s entire 2021 roster – would each arrive in theaters and on HBO Max. The move sparked an uproar from big stars and their agents over the potential loss of box office compensation, forcing Warner Bros. to enter into new agreements. He eventually paid around $ 200 million to thwart the rebellion.

The deeper question is: if the old-fashioned studios no longer try to maximize the box office for every movie but instead move to a hybrid model where success is judged in part by ticket sales and in part. part by the number of streaming subscriptions sold, what does that mean how stars are paid – and where do they make their movies?

The traditional model, one that studios have used for decades to close large-scale movie deals, is to pay a small fee up front and then share a portion of the revenue from ticket sales. The greater the success, the greater the “back end” gains for certain actors, directors and producers.

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The streaming giants have done it differently. They pay more up front – usually a lot, a lot more – instead of any final payment, giving them full control over future income. This means that people are paid as if their projects were successes before they were released (or even completed).

Ms. Johansson’s lawsuit also directly targeted Bob Chapek, CEO of Disney, and Robert A. Iger, President of Disney, citing stock awards given to them as rewards for building Disney +, which counts more. of 100 million subscribers worldwide. “Disney’s financial disclosures make it clear that the very Disney executives who orchestrated this strategy will personally benefit from their misconduct and that of Disney,” said the complaint.

According to the lawsuit, Ms. Johansson’s representatives have approached Disney and Marvel in recent months asking them to renegotiate her contract. “Disney and Marvel largely ignored Ms. Johansson,” the costume said.

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