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Elizabeth Olsen Shares Thoughts On Scarlett Johansson’s Black Widow Lawsuit And How It Relates To The Film Industry

Wanda Maximoff feeling confident after saving Black Widow and Okoye from Thanos' forces in Avengers: Infinity War Ok

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Scarlett Johansson’s Black Widow lawsuit against Disney has been dominating the headlines for weeks now. Many were surprised by the development, but it also seemed inevitable in the era of pandemic releases. Unfortunately, the back-and-forth between Johansson and the House of Mouse has brought about a debate in Hollywood over contracts and hybrid release plans. While some have focused on the moment, others have focused on the bigger picture. WandaVision’s Elizabeth Olsen fell into the latter category. After being silent on Johansson’s situation, Olsen shared her thoughts on the lawsuit and the film industry at large.

Elizabeth Olsen gave her opinion while being interviewed by Vanity Fair alongside Ted Lasso’s Jason Sudeikis. While some might expect Olsen to choose one side over the other, she remained pessimistically neutral on the situation. She seemed more worried about movie theaters staying alive than contract disputes. The WandaVision star said about the future of the movie theater experience:

I’m worried about a bunch of things. Not worried on Scarlett’s behalf. But I’m worried about small movies getting the opportunity to be seen in theaters. That was already a thing pre-COVID. I like going to the movies and I don’t necessarily want to see only an Oscar contender or a blockbuster. I would like to see art films and art house theaters. And so I do worry about that, and people having to keep these theaters alive. And I don’t know how financially that works for these theaters. I do hope that there’s some sort of solution that the larger companies are coming together to keep, at least in L.A. this is going to happen. But I do think it’s going to be how it kind of used to be when studios owned theaters. And I have a feeling that we might go back to that being the only way to keep them alive with such expensive real estate. But when it comes to actors and their earnings, I mean, that’s just, that’s just all contracts. So it’s either in the contract or it’s not.

Elizabeth Olsen’s statement spoke to the uncertainty seemingly taking hold over the film industry. The COVID-19 pandemic caused many theaters to shutter temporarily (or permanently) due to safety and financial issues. So, of course, Olsen would be worried about them going away. It’s already hard for smaller films to find audiences. She also gave some insight into how studios may be counteracting this downturn. It seems plausible if things turn out to be true. Plus, the hybrid strategy is still in the learning phase so there’s bound to be some bumps. Hopefully, it will all work out for actors eventually, as Olsen mentioned.

Both Scarlett Johansson and Elizabeth Olsen's time in the MCU can be seen on Disney+. You can use this link to sign up for the streaming service.

While Elizabeth Olsen advocated for small films, Jason Sudeikis wasn’t as neutral. Of course, that’s expected since Scarlett Johansson is part of the Saturday Night Live family as Colin Jost’s wife. He seemed very worried about Johansson’s Disney contract dispute. But Olsen seemed less worried given her history with the Black Widow star in the MCU. The Doctor Strange 2 star told Vanity Fair about her former co-star:

I think she’s so tough and literally when I read that I was like, ‘Good for you Scarlett.’

Elizabeth Olsen seemed to be toeing a delicate balancing act to not choose sides. Olsen is still working with Disney on different Marvel projects while trying to support Scarlett Johansson’s effort. It’s an unfortunate place to be but understandable given the back-and-forth between the two parties. While Olsen seemingly plays Switzerland, others have chosen sides in the contract battle. Johansson’s lawsuit has even inspired others to pursue their contract negotiations and lawsuits It seems like a shift is happening in Hollywood between studios and talent over compensation. Hopefully, everything will lead to a beneficial outcome for everyone eventually.

You can currently watch Elizabeth Olsen in the Emmy-nominated WandaVision on Disney+ until Doctor Strange and the Multiverse of Madness arrives in theaters on Mr. 25, 2022. Despite current circumstances, you can still catch Scarlett Johansson’s MCU swan song Black Widow in theaters and on Disney+.

Adreon Patterson

A boy from Greenwood, South Carolina. CinemaBlend Contributor. An animation enthusiast (anime, US and international films, television). Freelance writer, designer and artist. Lover of music (US and international).