“After initially responding to this litigation with a misogynistic attack on Scarlett Johansson, Disney is now, as expected, trying to hide its misconduct in a confidential arbitration,” senior counsel for the nominee said today. Oscars, John Berlinski, after House of the Mouse’s response to Johansson’s scathing criticism. The profits lawsuit has gone public.
“Why is Disney so afraid to argue this case in public? Kasowitz lawyer Benson Torres LLP added in what has become a war of words over the Cuban Missile Crisis.
“Because he knows that Marvel’s promises to give Black Widow a typical theatrical release” like his other films “had everything to do with ensuring that Disney wouldn’t cannibalize box office revenue in order to boost subscriptions. Disney +, ”adds Berlinski, as Disney insists. Marvel’s contract with Johansson provides for arbitration exactly in the event of a dispute like this that erupted on July 29. “Yet that is exactly what happened – and we look forward to presenting the overwhelming evidence to prove it. “
Bart & Fleming: Disney Work Pains and Scarlett Johansson Clash as Studios, Talent Fighting for New Streamer Agreement Model
Whether or not Bryan Lourd and Johansson’s reps at CAA step in is to be determined, but it’s clear no one is afraid to push the button (s) now.
PREVIOUSLY, 8:15 am: The House of the Mouse attempted to blunt the Black Widow’s bites, as expected.
Last night, during a one-hour witchcraft filing, the Walt Disney Company criticized Scarlett Johansson for daring to share her financial dispute with them over Black Widow Public. Parent company Marvel is demanding that everything go behind closed doors on the East Coast as soon as possible.
“Periwinkle has agreed that all claims” arising out of, in connection with or related to “Scarlett Johansson’s acting services for Black Widow would be submitted to confidential and binding arbitration in New York,” reads the petition filed Friday before the Los Angeles Superior Court By Disney External Lawyers Daniel Petrocelli, Leah Godesky and Tim Heafner of O’Melveny & Myers LLP against Johansson and Company (read here).
Whether Periwinkle’s claims against Disney fall within the scope of this deal is no small feat: Periwinkle’s interference and incitement claims are based on Periwinkle’s claim that Marvel violated the requirement of contract whereby any release of Black Widow include a “wide theatrical release” on “no less than 1,500 screens,” the 23-page motion adds, directly sweeping the obvious Achilles heel of the July 29 lawsuit filed by the longtime Marvel star. “The plain and expansive language of the arbitration agreement easily encompasses Pervenche’s complaint. “
Then, in the kind of language that Petrocelli clients like to see and mirroring Disney’s initial response to Johansson’s July 29 lawsuit, O’Melveny & Myers’ lawyers get a little harsh.
“In a futile effort to evade this inevitable outcome (and generate publicity through public filing), Pervenche has excluded Marvel as a party to this lawsuit – instead replacing its parent company Disney under theories of ‘contract interference,’ they lambasted. “But long-standing principles do not allow such a game.”
Disney wants an Oct. 15 hearing at DTLA on the arbitration issue. The company’s official response also reveals that it and its Marvel affiliate “on August 10, 2021, Marvel and Disney made a confidential arbitration request to Periwinkle in New York.” Johansson’s Kasowitz Benson Torres LLP team has yet to respond to that request, according to Disney.
On the other hand, Disney officially responded last night to Johansson and his lawyers’ interpretation of his contract with Marvel. Specifically, after seeing payments from executives Bob Iger and Bob Chapek in the actor’s lawsuit, the company and its muscle center hired on what repeatedly delayed the pandemic. Black Widow on the Disney + streamer as well as on the big screen when the Cate Shortland-directed film was finally released on July 9.
Paid $ 20 million up front (like Disney had a hard time feasting on July 29) for Black WidowJohansson said he was promised “an exclusive theatrical release.”
After Chapek himself searched Johnasson’s costume during the company’s last earnings conference call on August 12, Disney has now officially and firmly said its longtime star was wrong.
While Marvel and Disney share Periwinkle’s frustration with the challenges associated with releasing films during an ever-evolving public health crisis, Periwinkle’s claims that Marvel violated the agreement and Disney induced that violation or otherwise interfered with the agreement have no basis, ”said motion statements last night. “There is nothing in the agreement requiring that a ‘wide’ theatrical release ‘also be an’ exclusive ‘theatrical release. “
“The contract does not require theatrical distribution – and even less requires that such distribution be exclusive,” he continues. “In addition, the contract expressly provides that any theatrical distribution obligation is satisfied by distribution on“ no less than 1,500 screens ”. And even though Black Widow’s release coincided with a global public health crisis, Marvel has kept its promises. “
And there was apparently more money to offer.
In fact, as both sides attempt to set the official record, Disney points out that although Johansson’s costume says the actor who played super spy Natasha Romanoff for over a decade said she was in somewhat blinded by the decision to go for a cross-platform release because of the pandemic, they were clear with her and her CAA representatives.
“Marvel discussed the hybrid release model decision with Johansson in the spring of 2021, as the parties colluded regarding the release date of the image,” they said in the August 20 filing. Marvel assured Johansson that she would be credited with 100% of Premier Access and PEHV revenue for the purposes of the ticketing thresholds used to calculate any additional compensation – although Marvel has no obligation under the agreement to do so. . “
To solidify this point, Disney has opened the door a bit on how much Black Widow actually did – especially on Disney +, where subscribers could get “premium access” on release day for an additional $ 30.
“As of August 15, 2021, Picture had grossed over $ 367 million in box office revenue worldwide and over $ 125 million in streaming and download revenue. “
For those of you who enjoy good horse racing and / or math, Disney added Black Widowthe opening weekend of the opening weekend of just under $ 80 million to its admittedly very solid opening weekend of $ 55 million on Disney + for a total of 135 million dollars only in the United States. Or, as they say “more than that of many other Marvel Cinematic Universe movies, including Thor: The Dark World; The ant Man; Ant-Man and the Wasp; and Guardians of the Galaxy ” carried out in their respective opening days.
A fact that you can expect to hear over and over again as long as this matter remains in the public eye, for as long as it is.