Disney Resolve Dispute With Scarlett Johansson Over ‘Black Widow’

Walt Disney and Scarlett Johansson have settled a legal dispute stemming from the release of the superhero film “Black Widow,” the company and actress said in a joint statement last week.

The points of the agreement between Walt Disney and Scarlett Johansson’s Periwinkle Entertainment were not disclosed.

Johansson, 36, sued Disney in July. He accused the entertainment giant of breaching a contract by showing the film “Black Widow” on the Disney+ streaming service at the same time as it was in theaters.

His lawsuit, filed in Los Angeles County Court, said that the double-release strategy led to a reduction in his compensation because it was partly calculated based on ticket sales at movie theaters.

Black Widow characters are shown ahead of the opening of the Avengers Campus area at Disney California Adventure Park, Anaheim, California, USA, June 1, 2021. (REUTERS/Mario Anzuoni)

Black Widow characters are shown ahead of the opening of the Avengers Campus area at Disney California Adventure Park, Anaheim, California, USA, June 1, 2021. (REUTERS/Mario Anzuoni)

Disney at the time said the lawsuit was “baseless” and claimed the studio had fulfilled its contract with Johansson.

The company also said Johansson’s lawsuit demonstrates a “feelless disregard” for the risks moviegoers face amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

The dispute has drawn media scrutiny, while media companies are trying to build streaming services by offering premium content to attract subscribers.

PAUL DERGARABEDIAN is Comscore’s senior media analyst. “There is a lesson to be learned here. Since today’s business is different from before, what is the best way for studios and artists to work together? Artists need studios, studios need artists. They work together. harmony is definitely better than disagreement.”

“Black Widow,” which was released on July 9 in theaters and on Disney+, has grossed more than $378 million based on worldwide cinema ticket sales, according to Box Office Mojo. The film also brought in about $60 million via streaming services in its first 20 days of release, Disney said.

Black Widow

Black Widow

Johansson stars as a Russian hitman turned superhero Avenger, a role he has starred in in nine Marvel films.

Alan Bergman, head of Disney Studio Content, said Disney appreciates Johansson’s contribution to the Marvel Cinematic Universe and is excited to work with him again on a number of future projects, including ‘Tower of Terror.'”

Johansson also said he was pleased to be able to resolve his differences with the company and welcomed further cooperation.

Johansson was named the highest-earning actress in 2018 and 2019 by Forbes magazine. Pre-tax revenue was reported to be $56 million from June 2018 to June 2019. [vm/lt]

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