Former MMA fighter turned actress Gina Carano is demanding that Disney recast her as Cara Dune in the popular “Star Wars” series “The Mandalorian” following her unceremonious firing a few years ago.
Carano’s social media channel was filled with allegations of election fraud and questions about COVID-19 vaccine effectiveness at the time she was fired, but it was a post that seemingly compared wearing masks to the horrors that Jews suffered through during the Holocaust that caused Disney to cut ties.
Elon Musk, who bought Twitter and changed the social media platform to X last year, once pledged to fund any lawsuit where someone suffered as a result of exercising their right to free speech on his platform. It looks like he is making good on his word, as he is financing Carano’s lawsuit as she attempts to force Disney to return her to a galaxy far, far away.
Gina Carano Demands Disney Recast Her As Cara Dune In New Lawsuit Over ‘The Mandalorian’ Firing
On Tuesday, lawyers representing Gina Carano filed a complaint in California federal court alleging that she was fired from Disney’s “The Mandalorian” series after voicing her conservative views on social media. The lawsuit has been funded by Elon Musk, making good on his word to finance the legal bills of anyone who claims they have been discriminated against due to statements they made on his platform.
In a statement, X’s Head of Business Operations, Joe Benarroch, said:
“As a sign of X Corp’s commitment to free speech, we’re proud to provide financial support for Gina Carano’s lawsuit, empowering her to seek vindication of her free speech rights on X and the ability to work without bullying, harassment, or discrimination.”
In 2021, Lucasfilm announced that they were cutting ties with Carano after she posted a message on her Instagram Stories that read, “Most people today don’t realize that to get to the point where Naxi soldiers could easily round up thousands of Jews, the government first made their own neighbors hate them simply for being Jews. How is that any different from hating someone for their political views?”
According to court documents obtained by The Blast, Carano alleges that Disney and Lucasfilm harassed and defamed her for allegedly refusing to align with their viewpoints on pronoun use and political issues. Although she was fired, Carano claims that her male costars faced no repercussions for their social media posts and pointed to Pedro Pascal’s 2017 post comparing former President Donald Trump to Hitler.
According to the lawsuit, Gina Carano was paid $25,000 per episode and was later able to negotiate a one-time bonus of $5,000 for her work in “The Mandalorian.” After her comments on social media went viral, Carano claimed that she was asked to meet with a representative of the Gay & Lesbian Alliance Against Discrimination and issue a public apology for her remarks.
According to the complaint:
“Defendants went so far as to try and convince Carano’s publicist to force Carano to issue a statement admitting to mocking or insulting an entire group of people, which Carano had never done.”
Carano alleges that she was not only fired from “The Mandalorian,” but a “Star Wars” spin-off show called “Rangers of the New Republic” in which her character was expected to star.
“Rangers of the New Republic” was ultimately scrapped in order to make way for other Disney+ series set in a galaxy far, far away, such as “The Book of Boba Fett,” “Ahsoka,” and “The Acolyte.”
She Alleges Disney Started A ‘Post-Termination Smear Campaign’ Against Her
On page 38 of the complaint, Gina Carano complained that Disney’s “post-termination smear campaign” was not limited to “The Mandalorian.” The lawsuit alleges that “prior to her termination, in November 2020, Carano filmed an episode of Running Wild with Bear Grylls, an adventure program that aired on NatGeo, owned by Disney.”
“Following her termination, Disney surreptitiously removed the episode of Running Wild that showcased Carano from the show’s scheduled lineup – all in an effort to malign Carano and deny viewers the ability to see who she really is,” the lawsuit alleges, noting that Disney did finally air the episode on May 10, 2021 “after protests from fans and intervention by Bear Grylls to have the episode run as scheduled.”
In addition to those shows, Gina Carano also claims that her budding career as an actress suffered when UTA dropped her as a client following her controversial social media remarks.
Carano is suing for wrongful discharge and sex discrimination in the workplace. She is seeking a court order that would force Lucasfilm to recast her in her role as Cara Dune and at least $75,000, plus punitive damages for the emotional distress she alleges she suffered as a result of her public firing.
Last year, as part of his pledge to maintain free speech on X, Elon Musk said there would be “no limit” on the amount of legal action he would offer for users who claim they have been discriminated against at work due to comments they have posted on his platform. Musk claimed that he would “go after the boards of directors of the companies too” in his efforts to protect free speech.
Elon Musk hasn’t been the only one to go after Disney in recent months. Florida Governor Don DeSantis planned on “holding woke corporations accountable” as part of his failed 2024 Presidential election campaign. He is currently involved in a contentious legal battle with Disney after assuming control of the special tax district that controls the development around Disney World last year. The legal challenges have been speculated to be linked to Disney’s vocal opposition to Florida’s restrictive bill that limits classroom discussion on sexuality and gender, otherwise known as the “Don’t Say Gay” bill.
Gina Carano Takes To X To Deliver Lengthy Statement Amid Lawsuit
Today is an important day for me–I am filing a lawsuit against @lucasfilm & @Disney
After my 20 years of building a career from scratch, and during the regime of former Disney CEO Bob Chapek, Lucasfilm made this statement on Twitter, terminating me from The Mandalorian: “Gina…
— Gina Carano 🕯 (@ginacarano) February 6, 2024
On February 6, Gina Carano took to X to deliver a lengthy statement explaining why she filed her lawsuit against Disney.
“Today is an important day for me–I am filing a lawsuit against @lucasfilm & @Disney,” she began. “After my 20 years of building a career from scratch, and during the regime of former Disney CEO Bob Chapek, Lucasfilm made this statement on Twitter, terminating me from The Mandalorian:”
“Gina Carano is not currently employed by Lucasfilm & there are no plans for her to be in the future. Nevertheless, her social media posts denigrating people based on their cultural & religious identities are abhorrent & unacceptable.”
“Nothing could be further from the truth,” Carano continued. “The truth is I was being hunted down from everything I posted to every post I liked because I was not in line with the acceptable narrative of the time. My words were consistently twisted to demonize & dehumanize me as an alt-right-wing extremist. It was a bullying smear campaign aimed at silencing, destroying & making an example out of me.”
“The thing is I never even used aggressive language. I shared thought-provoking quotes, pictures, memes & occasionally I used my own words, not with aggression but with respect & the occasional comedy to keep the mood light in dark times,” she went on. “Look with your own eyes at what I posted and ask yourself, for example, where did I compare Republicans to the Jewish people in the holocaust? I didn’t. Ask yourself why they were calling me a racist, was there any merit behind that or history of it whatsoever? No.”
“Look at why I was called a transphobe–for making droid noises from Star Wars? ‘Beep, bop, boop’ was obviously directed to the online bullies and did not in any way denigrate transgender people,” she wrote. “Were my questions about masks, lockdowns & forced vaccines ok to ask & push the subject into the light? Should we have been allowed to publicly discuss those topics at that time without being harassed or censored? Absolutely.”
Carano went on to say, “Hollywood says they support female representation & equal rights. Why then were my male co-stars permitted to speak without harassment & re-education courses or termination, but I was not afforded the same right to exercise my freedom of speech? Artists do not sign away our rights as American citizens when we enter into employment.”
“I have spoken to all my co-stars since I was fired & there is nothing but care and kind words between us. I respect their right to free speech & do not have to think the same on every issue to be their friends & work with them & I know they feel the same towards me,” she added.
“A couple [of] months ago @ElonMusk tweeted that if you had been fired from using the platform (X) for exercising your right to free speech, he would like to offer these people legal representation,” she explained. “Quite the noble offer, but never in my wildest dreams would I have thought anyone would take on my case against Lucasfilm/Disney. Still, I did respond back ‘I think I qualify’ & thousands of people agreed–but I did not expect anything. To my surprise, a few months ago I received an email from a lawyer who had been hired by X to look into my story & many others.”
“Turns out after sending them as much information as I could gather these past few months, my now lawyers & X believe wholeheartedly in my case & are moving forward,” she revealed. “I would like to express my deepest gratitude & thank you to @ElonMusk & @X for giving me an opportunity to bring my case to light.”
“As for me, I would love to pick up where I left off & continue my journey of creating & participating in story-telling, which is my utmost passion & everything I worked so hard for. It has been difficult to move forward with the lies & labels stuck on me, backed & encouraged by the most powerful entertainment company in the world. I am grateful someone has come to my defense in such a powerful way & look forward to clearing my name. Thank you to all the people who have supported me & made your voices heard. I pray God blesses each & every one of you,” she concluded, ending her statement, “With love, Gina Carano.”
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