This is The Friday Post, Hung Up’s weekly roundup of celebrity mess and miscellanea. If you like this kind of thing, why not subscribe?
Scarlett Johansson has put on her legal action wig. The actress is suing Disney for an alleged breach of contract over the release of Black Widow, which she says was supposed to be released exclusively in theaters. Instead, Disney released the film in theaters and on Disney+ (with "Premiere Access”) simultaneously. “Disney intentionally induced Marvel’s breach of the agreement, without justification, in order to prevent Ms. Johansson from realizing the full benefit of her bargain with Marvel,” the suit says, according to the Wall Street Journal. The paper says it is estimated that ScarJo missed out on $50 million because of the Disney+ release. Curiously: as early as 2019, pre-pandemic, the actress tried to ensure that Black Widow’s release wouldn’t include streaming Disney+, thereby limiting her profits.
Black Widow fulfills Johansson’s commitment to Marvel; the movie is on track to be one of the studio’s lowest-performing releases, according to Variety.
Disney, in reply, put on its legal action wig right back. The House of Mouse called ScarJo’s lawsuit “sad and distressing” and really went out of its way to air her out!
(For the record, I have not seen Disney/Marvel act out in this way since they passed on working with Edward Norton again after a public and bitter feud: “We have made the decision to not bring Ed Norton back to portray the title role of Bruce Banner in the Avengers. Our decision is definitely not one based on monetary factors, but instead rooted in the need for an actor who embodies the creativity and collaborative spirit of our other talented cast members,” Marvel boss Kevin Feige said in 2010.)
What do you call an airing out in reply to an airing out? “The company included her salary in their press statement in an attempt to weaponize her success as an artist and businesswoman, as if that were something she should be ashamed of,” ScarJo’s agent, Bryan Lourd, replied to the company’s statement. “Scarlett is extremely proud of the work that she, and all of the actors, writers, directors, producers, and the Marvel creative team have been a part of for well over a decade.”
On the one hand, making me side with Vicky Scarjo Barcelona is annoying — but she’s right that they scammed her, leaked her salary to make her look bossy and selfish, and used the pandemic as an excuse. (Don’t forget that they don’t, and have never, given a fuck about public safety.) What’s more: Disney accusing someone else of being money guzzling and greedy is, frankly, hilarious. But I’m already seeing the girlboss-ification of this lawsuit happening in the trades, and I don’t like it!
Like clockwork, Alec Baldwin — who, please remember, is totally uninvolved in this but claims to have turned down Marvel once — issued a ruling:
What paid subscribers got this week:
A Bennifer blog, obviously.
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DaBaby Needs DaPacifier
We are witnessing a stunning and stupid escalation of one man’s total irrelevance. Every day, DaBaby, the most important rapper of 2016 — no wait I just checked that and actually it’s 2019 that I’m thinking of — has found new and surprising ways to double and triple down on his own ignorance and homophobia.
At Rolling Loud music festival in Miami on Sunday night DaBaby, narrowly dodged a shoe thrown at him from the audience. The shoe was reportedly a “motherfucking busted ass g#d-d##n* Adida,” as reported by DaBaby himself, moments after the shoe was thrown.
On this issue, we are on the side of the shoe. During that same Rolling Loud set, DaBaby asked fans to shine their cell phone flashlights if they "didn’t show up today with HIV/AIDS, any of them deadly sexually transmitted diseases that will make you die in two to three weeks." On Instagram, he defended his words as a “call to action,” like it’s some pastel colored Instagram graphic shared online in the summer of 2020!
DaWeek in DaBaby: Monday
Straight men worldwide are dropping like flies, and by “dropping like flies” I mean: siding?? With?? DaBaby?? “If Lil Nas X can kick his shit in peace… so should DaBaby. #Equality,” the rapper T.I. wrote in the comments of The Shade Room, a blog dedicated to ignoring the multiple allegations of sexual assault against him and his wife.
The Pretty Ricky vocalist Pleasure P made a paltry attempt to pretend that DaBaby’s comments were actually “normal” “party talk.”
“I’m surprised and horrified at DaBaby’s comments,” Dua Lipa wrote on her IG story, according to Variety. “I really don’t recognize this as the person I worked with. I know my fans know where my heart lies and that I stand 100% with the LGBTQ community. We need to come together to fight the stigma and ignorance around HIV/AIDS.”
Elton John has logged on:
Unfortunately, Tory Lanez has logged on too. The rapper/alleged gunman asked on Twitter “when did rap get so politically correct that u can’t speak your mind and have an opinion.” Boosie rounds out the clown town trio, suggesting that Lil Nas X tweeting about performing naked is “disrespectful.” (Honestly, click those links at your own peril — there is some fuckery afoot.)
DaBaby released a new song and companion video — both bad — that makes more ignorant and offensive references to AIDS. He punctuates the video with this, which I honestly thought was fake the first time I saw it:
I have read “Don’t fight hate with hate” many times and I’m no closer to understanding how this makes any sense. That sentence implies that he knows he is being hateful! The sentence “My apologies for being me the same way you want the freedom to be you,” which makes not even one more lick of sense. Send the meteor, King Jesus, and the copyeditor too.
Chris Brown weighed in and — unfortunately for all of us who don’t post that same video of him doing a backflip once every six months — he’s finally right about something.
The UK music festival Parklife 2021 dropped DaBaby as a headliner, TMZ reports.
Madonna and Questlove condemn DaBaby. DaBaby says he doesn’t know who Questlove is.
Also, a subtweet from Charlie Puth:
And then a tweet clarifying the subtweet, lmao:
ً Tea⁷💡| famous era @perfectpitch0@charlieputh dababy shade again
The former United States president George W. Bush, not a rapper but a war criminal busy trying to paint his way out of hell, famously dodged a shoe thrown at him in December 2008. Da-buya has not commented on DaBaby, dAdida, or his own crimes.
*For reasons that exceed the scope of this conversation I have promised my mother that I won’t take the Lord’s name in vain — even when it’s not me saying it, even when I’m quoting someone else, even when I’m just using a meme that was made by some other anonymous person. Sometimes she reads this newsletter and sometimes she doesn’t, but I’m playing it safe today.
**And not that it matters but I did check Alec Baldwin’s Instagram for a “consider the source”-ass post but he does not appear to have any opinions on this topic.
***And one more thing I will never forgive DaBaby for making the music icon and humanitarian Elton John tweet AND making Chris Brown correct. It’s too much. It’s too much!
And an extra something else for paid subscribers: a lil blog about Adam Thee Stallion :) You can read it here :)
This week, Hollywood’s leading divorced man is:
Kanye West, whose spirit (and body) is trapped in purgatory (the Mercedes Benz Stadium in Atlanta) until he repents (releases a new album).
The runner-up is A-Rod, who is following J.Lo around now:
I spend so much time celebrating divorce in this newsletter, but a wedding has finally sparked joy: Issa Rae’s!
Something curious has happened this week, as he prepares his Oklahoe audition (the movie Stillwater): this narrative that Matt Damon is not cloyingly secretive but an unknowable shapeshifter. He’s a normal guy able to transform into other normal guys, and this quality is somehow unique to him. You can see it at work in the New York Times Magazine on Tuesday, a little bit in The Ringer on Wednesday, and it happens, curiously, on the Today Show nearly every day. It’s half of Stillwater’s marketing, this idea that Matt Damon is not just Matt Damon, but every white man you’ve ever known or paid money to see in a movie:
The Film Stage 📽 @TheFilmStageMatt Damon strives to exonerate his daughter in first trailer for Tom McCarthy's #Stillwater: https://t.co/NIQUQMlUQU https://t.co/u3dk9qpUFH
It’s interesting how he uses Ben Affleck, and by extension Bennifer, to his advantage. Affleck is the mega- solar- actual movie star; he’s the most guy-next-door famous dude. Lainey Gossip was great on this: “There’s a whole section in [the Times] piece that compares and contrasts Matt and Ben and their seemingly different approaches to fame that reinforces the idea that Matt is the ‘one of us’ movie star, despite the fact that in some ways, especially in the celebrity ecosystem, Matt has arguably enjoyed the same amount, if not more, privilege.”
Coincidentally: I actually did enjoy a Matt Damon performance this week, in Steven Soderbergh’s neo-noir No Sudden Move. He was not doing his normal generic white man shtick, thank God. He should only play villains!
The girls are fighting! A miniseries
Grimes appears to respond to a years-old dragging from Azealia Banks? I really don’t know what’s happening here but I know whose side I’m not on! (Grimes’s)
The girls are fighting! Part 2
Amanda Knox asks how Stillwater can be based on her wrongful conviction without seeking any insight from her. The thread is long, but worth reading:
The girls are fighting! Part 3
Meghan McCain’s View reign of terror and glitter eyeshadow has come to an end. I will miss her.
The girls are fighting! Part 4
Ben Stiller, himself a beneficiary of Hollywood nepotism, defends Hollywood nepotism:
You can read the whole thread of Stiller’s thoughts here, although I don’t recommend it because it is idiotic.
One time I had an idea that “we as a society do not arrive at timothée chalamet without demi moore in ghost.” On one level I have absolutely no idea what I meant, but on another level I am certain I was correct and God was speaking through me.
Anyway: Demi Moore’s ex, Guess Who star Ashton Kutcher, is still stinky and flopping.
Something about “friends will hang on to others without realizing I can’t just go out and get more” will stay with me for a long time.
No more Michael Che! Society has moved past the need for Michael Che!
The Saturday Night Live comedian made vile jokes about Simone Biles, and then claimed he was hacked, and as of the writing of this (5:30 p.m.-ish, yes I cut it pretty close to the deadline when I’m writing these) he’s posting defenses of his jokes on his IG story.
I’m not a person of RHONY experience, but maybe I should be!
Something I read and really loved this week: Kelly Conaboy on bathroom trash cans, specifically men not having bathroom trash cans.
Something else I read and really loved this week: The newsletter The Wall Street Jordan, which is an immediate click for me every time it hits my inbox.
LL Cool Jordan has been doing the important work of cataloguing the effects of Jordan Firstman’s birthday party:
You can read more of The Wall Street Jordan here.
That’s all this week! Thank you for reading. Please join all the hot girls on IG and watch The Last Seduction on Criterion this weekend, that movie rules!!!!!