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Society & Culture
Virtual Legality Episode 518

Black Widow Lawsuit! A Legal Look at Scarlett Johansson vs Disney

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1m Jul 30, 2021
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The Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU) has had a tough couple of years.

Now, after pandemic delays, "interesting" TV excursions, and a general lack of the star power we saw in the heights of 2019, Disney has found itself in yet another Marvel related controversy: Black Widow star Scarlett Johansson has sued the multi-national media giant for inducing a breach of contract, and...effectively, not playing fair.

What has the Black Widow herself claimed? And will she devour some of the profits of the studio she used to love, or will it devour her?

Heroes don't die on Vormir, they die in litigation...in Virtual Legality.

#BlackWidow #Disney #Lawsuit


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Discussed in this episode:
"Black Widow Sets July 2021 Release Date For Cinemas And Disney+"
Empire - March 23, 2021
https://www.empireonline.com/movies/news/black-widow-july-release-date-cinemas-disney-plus/

"Box Office: ‘Black Widow’ Spins Record $80M U.S. Opening, Earns $60M on Disney+ Premier Access"
The Hollywood Reporter - July 11, 2021
https://www.hollywoodreporter.com/movies/movie-news/black-widow-box-office-disney-milestone-opening-1234980531/

"Theater Owners Blast Disney for Making ‘Black Widow’ Available Immediately on Streaming"
The Hollywood Reporter - July 18, 2021
https://www.hollywoodreporter.com/business/business-news/black-widow-theater-owners-blast-disney-1234984300/

"Scarlett Johansson is suing Disney over 'Black Widow' Disney+ release"
CNN - July 29, 2021
https://www.cnn.com/2021/07/29/media/scarlett-johansson-disney-lawsuit/index.html

"They didn't amend an exclusivity provision? Really?"
Twitter Thread - July 29, 2021 - Hoeg Law
https://twitter.com/HoegLaw/status/1420808638697025541

Scarlett Johansson v The Walt Disney Company
Filed July 29, 2021
https://deadline.com/wp-content/uploads/2021/07/Complaint_Black-Widow-1-WM.pdf

"Breach of Implied Covenant of Good Faith and Fair Dealing"
California Jury Instructions
https://www.justia.com/trials-litigation/docs/caci/300/325/

"Disney to Launch a Subscription Streaming Service in Europe, Hints that Marvel & Star Wars Services Could Follow In U.S."
TechCrunch - October 21, 2015
https://techcrunch.com/2015/10/21/disney-to-launch-a-subscription-streaming-service-in-europe-hints-that-marvel-star-wars-services-could-follow-in-u-s/

"Netflix Movies: Producers Weigh Hidden Downsides"
March 19, 2015
https://www.hollywoodreporter.com/tv/tv-news/netflix-movies-producers-weigh-hidden-782403/

Sample Merger Clause
Law Insider
https://www.lawinsider.com/clause/merger-clause

"Disney Strikes Back Over Scarlett Johansson’s ‘Black Widow’ Lawsuit, Reveals Her $20 Million Payday – Update"
Deadline - July 29, 2021
https://deadline.com/2021/07/scarlett-johansson-walt-disney-co-black-widow-lawsuit-1234802440/


"Virtual Legality" is a continuing series discussing the law, video games, software, and everything digital, hosted by Richard Hoeg, of the Hoeg Law Business Law Firm (Hoeg Law).

CHECK OUT THE REST OF VIRTUAL LEGALITY HERE:
https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PL1zDCgJzZUy9YAU61GoW-00K0TJOGnPCo

DISCUSSION IS PROVIDED FOR INFORMATIONAL PURPOSES ONLY AND IS NOT TO BE CONSTRUED AS LEGAL ADVICE. INDIVIDUALS INTERESTED IN THE LEGAL TOPICS DISCUSSED IN THIS VIDEO SHOULD CONSULT WITH THEIR OWN COUNSEL.


DESIGN WORK
Joe Ellis (Logo Design)
Chris Leroux (Motion Graphics)
For more information: contact Chris at @Chrisleroux on Twitter.

PODCAST VERSIONS ALSO AVAILABLE

Table of Contents

Timecode Title
00:00 Introduction
05:53 The Complaint
11:01 A "wide theatrical release"?
14:13 Good Faith and Fair Dealing
18:00 Email Promises and Merger Clauses
21:45 Deliberately Hurting its own Box Office?
26:50 Two Causes of Action (Breach)
29:51 Disney's Response
31:45 Conclusion

About Hoeg Law

The Hoeg Law Firm is a business law firm with big law experience and a small firm approach focusing on start-ups, technology, financing, and everything else a business might need.


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