Scarlett Johansson Sues Disney For Releasing ‘Black Widow’ On Streaming Service

Scarlett Johansson sued the Walt Disney Company on Thursday, claiming it breached her contract by releasing the movie Black Widow, which she played the title character in, on Disney+ the same day it premiered in theaters, as the film industry faces a shakeup amid the rise of online streaming and the pandemic-induced slump of movie theaters.

Johansson’s lawsuit — filed in state court in Los Angeles — says Disney broke a longstanding agreement with the actress to roll out Black Widow as a “wide theatrical release,” according to a court filing sent to Forbes via Johansson’s lawyer.

By offering the film to theater-goers and Disney+ users at the same time earlier this month, the suit claims Disney “lure[d] the Picture’s audience away from movie theatres and towards its owned streaming service,” which harmed Johansson because her pay for starring in Black Widow was based partly on bonuses for strong box office sales.