Scottish actor Gerard Butler recently filed a suit over allegations that he was not properly compensated for the 2013 film, ‘Olympus Has Fallen.’
When the COVID-19 pandemic first began, movie theaters across the country closed their doors and many shows and movies due to release during the pandemic had to make use of streaming services, like Disney+ and Netflix. However, not every actor and actress has been happy about this change, prompting actress Scarlett Johansson to file a lawsuit earlier this week against Disney+ over the release of her movie, ‘Black Widow.’ Similar to Johansson, actor Gerard Butler announced that he too is filing a lawsuit, but unlike the Black Widow starlet, Butler’s suit relates to a movie that was released in 2013. It seems Johansson’s suit was the domino to get others, like Butler, to consider similar lawsuits.
Butler’s lawsuit was filed in Los Angeles Superior Court against the producers of ‘Olympus Has Fallen,’ a 2013 action film. In the film, Butler plays a character named Mike Banning, who is a Secret Service Agent tasked with protecting the Presidents from terrorists during an attack on the White House. The film went on to spawn two sequels, and there are rumors that another might be in the works soon.
The producers named in the suit include Nu Image and Millennium Films. According to the actor, “he is owed at least $10 million in backend compensation from the action film’s profits.” The suit claims the defendants “undervalued domestic and foreign receipts by tens of millions of dollars,” and further alleges the producers “did not report $8 million that went to its studio executives.”
On top of that, the suit claims there was “fraud, breach of contract, breach of the implied covenant of good faith, and fair dealing and intentional interference with contractual relations and accounting with the film.” The lawsuit further stated:
“Producers have earned tens of millions of dollars from Olympus, but refuse to pay Butler a penny of the profits promised to him in the parties’ agreement…Producers embarked on a scheme designed to grossly misrepresent the finances of the Film to Butler so that Butler would believe that no such payments were due…It appears the Producers’ modus operandi is to hide the profits from Olympus to keep those profits for themselves.”
As mentioned earlier, Scarlett Johansson filed a lawsuit against Disney over the release of her film, ‘Black Widow.’ According to the actress, “her contract was breached when the media giant released the movie on its Disney+ streaming service at the same time it hit movie theaters.” Additionally, she argues the decision to release the movie on Disney+ may have cost her more than $50 million.
In response to the allegations, Disney stated:
“There is no merit whatsoever to this filing…The lawsuit is especially sad and distressing in its callous disregard for the horrific and prolonged global effects of the COVID-19 pandemic. Disney has fully complied with Ms. Johansson’s contract and furthermore, the release of ‘Black Widow’ on Disney+ with Premier Access has significantly enhanced her ability to earn additional compensation on top of the $20M she has received to date.”