Scarlett Johansson may have spent years playing a superhero — though she’s done with that (or at least done with Marvel) now — but in real life she’s done something heroic, too: She’s taken on Disney. Two years ago the actress made headlines for suing the House of Mouse over how they released Black Widow, her MCU character’s first and only solo outing. She was awarded with a settlement — and she was awarded with random people giving her props.
“I couldn’t even walk through a restaurant without somebody saying, ‘Good for you. Stand up for yourself,’” Johansson said during a profile by Variety (in a bit teased out by Insider). “I could see that it had a bigger impact. I got support from strangers that have no skin in the game at all.”
Johannson’s lawsuit took Disney to task for dropping Black Widow in theaters and on streaming on the same day, back when theaters a good half-year from starting to return to normal. By doing so, her legal team argued, they violated her contract, which called for the film to be released exclusively in theaters. Disney retaliated by attacking Johansson for her “callous disregard for the horrific and prolonged global effects of the COVID-19 pandemic.” To make the scuffle all the more surreal for her, she was mere days from delivering her second child.
Two months later Disney settled with her, offering a payout that was reportedly in the area of $40 million, on top of the $20 million she’d be paid upfront.
The two parties have since made peace, with her starring in their film version of the theme park ride Tower of Terror. Besides, Disney is a little busy right now repeatedly out-maneuvering the governor of Florida.