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The Mandalorian: Gina Carano Posts on Disney Motion to Dismiss Lawsuit

Gina Carano responded to Disney's motion to dismiss her lawsuit against the company for being wrongfully fired from The Mandalorian.

As many of you know, ex-The Mandalorian supporting cast member Gina Carano – with the financial backing of Twitter/X owner Elon Musk – filed a lawsuit back in February of this year, claiming Disney fired her from the streaming series and cost her future work based on her posted political beliefs. Earlier this week, Disney responded by filing a motion to dismiss Carano's lawsuit, making the argument that the company had a First Amendment right to terminate the actor's employment and that it had a "constitutional right not to associate its artistic expression with Carano's speech." Taking to social media earlier today, Carano responded to Disney's motion.

"Disney has confirmed what has been known all along, they will fire you if you say anything they disagree with, even if they have to MISREPRESENT, MALIGN, and MISCHARACTERIZE you to do it. They are now on record letting everyone who works for them know that Disney will take any chance they get to control what you say, what you think or they will attempt to destroy your career. Glad we cleared that up," Carano wrote. "The First Amendment does not allow Disney to wantonly DISCRIMINATE, which is what they have done in my case and frankly have now admitted they did. If you ever wanted to know what today's 'Disney values' are, they just told you."

the mandalorian
THE MANDALORIAN (Image: Lucasfilm)

Gina Carano/Disney Lawsuit: What You Need to Know…

In February, Carano's Twitter/X-funded legal team filed a complaint in California federal court, suing Disney & Lucasfilm for discrimination & wrongful termination over voicing what the complaint claims Disney saw as right-wing opinions. Along with a minimum of $75,000 (plus punitive damages), Carano is also seeking to have Lucasfilm recast her in the role. In the complaint, Carano alleges – among other things – that she was expected to adjust her position on a number of issues to be more in line with Disney and Lucasfilm while others (with co-star Pedro Pascal named as an example) were not disciplined for posting negative posts towards Republicans.

In addition, the complaint claims that Carano was terminated shortly after she refused to first meet with a representative of the Gay & Lesbian Alliance Against Discrimination and issue a public apology. From there, the complaint claims that Carano was required to meet with Lucasfilm president Kathleen Kennedy and 45 employees who identify as LGBTQ+ – a meeting that Carano also declined. The complaint also alleges that Disney continued a "post-termination smear campaign" that has impacted her career – including being dropped by UTA and her transactional lawyer.

Carano and Musk may have a tough hill to climb when it comes to legally arguing Free Speech/First Amendment when it comes to private companies – as opposed to working for the local, state, and/or federal governments. Here's a legal explanation from the Blanchard & Walker PLLC website: "The first thing to know about the First Amendment is that it is a limit only on government. It prohibits the federal government from making laws that infringe on the rights of religion, speech, press, assembly and petition. Through the Fourteenth Amendment, state and local governments are also prohibited from infringing on these rights. Yet, one of the most powerful restraints on individual freedom is the power of employers to discharge workers. If your employer is a private entity, the First Amendment offers you no protection from being fired on account of what you say."

Image: Screencap (The Mandalorian/Gina Carano)

The Mandalorian/Gina Carano: A Look Back

As we reported previously, Carano was fired from Lucasfilm & Disney+'s original "Star Wars" spinoff series in February 2021 after months of controversial social media posts that Disney saw as promoting conspiracy theories, questionable science & misinformation. It culminated in an Instagram Stories post where Carano supported comparing the "persecution" that she believes conservatives were enduring (especially with the COVID pandemic) with what Jewish people suffered in Nazi Germany. Check out a screencap of the image Carano posted above, which was reportedly one of the final straws for the streaming service. In its motion filing on Tuesday, Disney argued:

The First Amendment to the U.S. Constitution generally forbids the government from dictating to artistic creators how they may develop and express their own artistic messages. This principle applies fully to enterprises that employ others to perform artistic messages through song, dance, or acting: for such artistic expressions, the performer is the performance, no less than the words written on the script or lyric sheet. For this reason, just as a newspaper is entitled to broad deference in choosing which writers to employ to express its editorial positions, a creative production enterprise is entitled to broad deference in deciding which performers to employ to express its artistic messages.

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Ray FlookAbout Ray Flook

Serving as Television Editor since 2018, Ray began five years earlier as a contributing writer/photographer before being brought onto the core BC team in 2017.
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