Scarlett Johansson arrives for the Vanity Fair Oscar party at the Wallis Annenberg Center for the Performing Arts in Beverly Hills, Calif., on February 9, 2020. She sued Disney on Thursday for releasing "Black Widow" on streaming and in theaters on the same day. File Photo by Chris Chew/UPI | License Photo
July 29 (UPI) -- Actor Scarlett Johansson sued Disney on Thursday, saying the company's decision to simultaneously release Black Widow in theaters and on the Disney+ was a breach of contract that cost her millions of dollars.
According to the lawsuit filed in Los Angeles Superior Court, the simultaneous release drove audiences to the streaming platform, lessening box office receipts. Deadline reported that Johansson's compensation for the Marvel movie was "largely ... based on box office receipts," which included bonuses for her if it hit certain monetary milestones.
Black Widow, which was released July 9, earned $80 million in North American theaters on opening day and another $78 million. The movie took in $60 million on Disney+.
The Wall Street Journal, which broke the news about the lawsuit, cited unnamed sources, which said Johansson lost out on $50 million in bonuses due to Disney's decision to release the film simultaneously on the streaming platform.
"Disney chose to placate Wall Street investors and pad its bottom line, rather than allow its subsidiary Marvel to comply with the agreement," the lawsuit says. "To no one's surprise, Disney breach of the agreement successfully pulled millions of fans away from the theaters and toward its Disney+ streaming service."
In addition to Johansson's portrayal of the titular character, Black Widow starred Florence Pugh, Rachel Weisz, David Harbour and O-T Fagbenle.
Scarlett Johansson takes a photo with fans at the Toronto International Film Festival premiere of "Lost in Translation" at the Elgin Theater in Toronto, on September 5, 2003. Johansson went on to win the BAFTA award
for Best Performance by an Actress in a Motion Picture - Comedy or Musical for her role in "Lost in Translation." Photo by Christine Chew/UPI | License Photo