In an interesting turn of events, it seems that Scarlett and Disney had a chat before the lawsuit began.
If you haven’t heard, Scarlett Johansson has sued Disney for breach of contract after having Black Widow release on Disney’s Premier Access on Disney+ at the same time as theaters. Allegedly, Johansson was contracted to have an exclusive theatrical release for the film where she would receive bonus money for box office sales on top of her $20 million salary. The actress argues that the option to see the film at home caused some box office Guests to opt-out of the theatre option and watch the film from home.
Disney has since said that she would receive compensation for both Disney’s Premier Access and box office sales. Still, now it has come to light that Johansson was trying to negotiate a $100 million bonus with an anticipated box office record of $1.2 billion based on past Marvel film records. At the moment, the global box office for Black Widow stands at $372.3 million worldwide. That number jumps to $500 million after looking at Premier Access’ revenue, but still less than 50% of the anticipated box office numbers that Johansson was predicting. Disney countered with a lower offer, which is when the lawsuit began.
The battle between Disney and Johansson has become quite vile, with Disney calling the actress callous and Johansson’s legal team calling Disney misogynistic. Marvel stars like Elizabeth Olsen have stood by Scarlett’s side; however, Benedict Cumberbatch has not done the same. Cumberbatch recently discussed the lawsuit, calling it a “mess” and noting that everyone must be understanding during these unprecedented times in conjunction with alternative methods of releasing a film.
In case you have not seen the film, the official description of Black Widow is:
In Marvel Studios’ action-packed spy thriller “Black Widow,” Natasha Romanoff aka Black Widow confronts the darker parts of her ledger when a dangerous conspiracy with ties to her past arises. Pursued by a force that will stop at nothing to bring her down [Taskmaster and Dreykov (Ray Winstone)], Natasha must deal with her history as a spy and the broken relationships left in her wake long before she became an Avenger.
Scarlett Johansson reprises her role as Natasha/Black Widow, Florence Pugh stars as Yelena, David Harbour portrays Alexei/The Red Guardian, and Rachel Weisz is Melina. “Black Widow” — the first film in Phase Four of the Marvel Cinematic Universe — is directed by Cate Shortland and produced by Kevin Feige.
Now, Disney has reportedly severed ties with the actress, much like Johnny Depp — which means her rumored Tower of Terror live-action film has been canned, or at least her presence in it.
What do you think of Scarlett’s decision to sue after Disney refused to pay her $100 million?