Groups call Disney’s ‘character attack’ on Johansson – .

Groups call Disney’s ‘character attack’ on Johansson – .

In what could be the most high-profile movie star-studio lawsuit in Hollywood history, Scarlett Johansson sues Disney for violating its contractual payment structure on Marvel’s Black Widow. Like many stars, Johansson has a series of bonuses built into his contract based on the money the film makes at the box office, but when Disney chose to release the film simultaneously in theaters and via Premiere Access on Disney + , they reduced the potential box office profits for the film, which reduced Johansson’s salary.

Instead of renegotiating the terms of the contract or agreeing on a payment price, Disney largely ignored Johansson and his team’s request to resolve the pending issue. Disney retaliated with an angry missive, describing Johansson’s claim as an “unfeeling disregard for the horrific and prolonged global effects of the COVID-19 pandemic.” One wonders what their response would have been if Chris Evans or Robert Downey Jr. had faced a similar situation. It’s particularly infuriating given that Disney themselves have shown an “insensitive disregard” for COVID-19, which has laid off 32,000 workers during the pandemic.

Time’s Up, ReFrame and Women in Film released a joint statement regarding Scarlett Johansson’s lawsuit against Disney for breach of contract with the Black Widow The statement reads: “While we take no position on trade issues in the Scarlett Johansson-The Walt Disney Company litigation, we strongly oppose Disney’s recent statement that attempts to characterize Johansson as callous or selfish. for defending its contractual commercial rights. . This sexist attack has no place in a trade conflict and contributes to an environment in which women and girls are seen as less able than men to protect their own interests without facing ad hominem criticism.

Johansson’s CAA agency also released a statement defending his client against the character attack. Bryan Lourd, co-chair of the Creative Artists Agency, said: “They shamelessly and wrongly accused Ms. Johansson of being insensitive to the global COVID pandemic, in an attempt to make her appear as someone they and I know she isn’t. He added, “The company included her salary in its press release in an attempt to arm her success as an artist and businesswoman, as if it was something she should be ashamed of, … Scarlett is extremely proud of the work that she, and all of Marvel’s actors, writers, directors, producers, and the creative team have been a part of for over a decade.

“Disney’s direct attack on his character and all that it implied is underneath the business that many of us in the creative community have worked with successfully for decades,” he said. he declares. And he’s not wrong: Johansson has appeared in nine Marvel films as a core member of the Avengers, a franchise that has brought in billions of dollars to Disney.

Disney was betting that Scarlett Johansson’s problematic story, coupled with the rampant misogyny we see aimed at successful women, somehow makes her ashamed of taking a below-average offer. Plus, they clearly hoped she would keep quiet to maintain her relationship with the studio. But Johansson is one of the top tier of successful actors who don’t need Disney or their affiliates.

In response, fellow actors Emma Stone and Emily Blunt are reportedly considering their own pursuits as their films Cruel and Jungle cruise were subjected to the same hybrid release structure as Black Widow. If they join Johansson, they could spark a major power play between the prominent actresses and Disney.

(via Variety, image : Marvel Studios)

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