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08th Sep 2021

Scarlett Johansson asked for $100 million after Black Widow’s Disney+ release

Kieran Galpin

Black Widow

The Black Widow star is currently filming a Wes Anderson film

Scarlett Johansson reportedly asked for $100 million as payment due to the simultaneous release of Black Widow in both theatres and Disney+

In August, news of Johansson suing Disney sent shockwaves across Hollywood studios. Black Widow release plans were said to have cost her millions in lost earnings.

Due to the looming threat of the pandemic, Johansson had an exclusive cinematic release worked into her contract which was allegedly not honoured.

The Wall Street Journal reported that Johansson’s lawyers asked Disney for $80 million to compensate for her lost revenue. Sometime later, Cruella star Emma Stone reportedly considered following suit – quite literally.

To calculate the number, the lawyers estimated that Black Widow would have made $1.2 billion at the box office pre-pandemic. They then combined this with her starting salary of $20 million to calculate the grand total of $100 million.

Johansson’s lawyer John Berlinski previously explained the case: “It’s no secret that Disney is releasing films like Black Widow directly onto Disney+ to increase subscribers and thereby boost the company’s stock price – and that it’s hiding behind Covid-19 as a pretext to do so.

“But ignoring the contracts of the artists responsible for the success of its films in furtherance of this short-sighted strategy violates their rights, and we look forward to proving as much in court.”

The WSJ story claimed the $100 million request was a “starting point” and that negotiations were to continue from there.

But no counteroffer was made, nor were negotiations started.

The newspaper also suggests that the lawsuit came about because of poor handling.

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