Former MMA fighter-turned-actress Gina Carano announced a wrongful termination lawsuit against Disney and Lucasfilm on Tuesday in connection with her firing from the cast of “The Mandalorian” in 2021. Carano’s suit, which accuses both companies of discriminating against her for expressing right-wing views on social media, is being financially backed by X owner Elon Musk, who offered legal assistance to anyone who lost a job over free speech on his platform.
In early 2021, Lucasfilm, a subsidiary of Disney, announced that Carano had been fired from “The Mandalorian” and a planned spinoff show centered on Cara Dune, Carano’s character in the hit Disney+ series, had been canceled.
In the weeks leading up to her termination, Carano had made multiple politically charged posts across various platforms, including several making fun of wearing masks and alleging voter fraud in the 2020 election. Carano also mockingly listed her pronouns as “Beep/Boop/Bop,” but the biggest controversy was generated by a screenshot of another user’s post shared to Carano’s Instagram comparing the modern political climate to life in Nazi Germany.
The offending post read:
Jews were beaten in the streets, not by Nazi soldiers but by their neighbors…even by children. Because history is edited, most people today don’t realize that to get to the point where Nazi 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?
The ensuing controversy intensified calls for Disney to part ways with the outspokenly conservative actress, to which the company readily relented. Per a statement from Lucasfilm:
Gina Carano is not currently employed by Lucasfilm and there are no plans for her to be in the future. Nevertheless, her social media posts denigrating people based on their cultural and religious identities are abhorrent and unacceptable.
Nearly three years later, after Elon Musk offered to fund the legal bills of anyone “unfairly treated” for liking or posting content on X, Carano replied, “I think I qualify.”
I think I qualify. ☺️ https://t.co/t2MryUFLtS
— Gina Carano 🕯 (@ginacarano) August 6, 2023
After months of silence on the issue, Carano again took to X on Tuesday to announce that, with the help of an attorney from the social media platform, she will be seeking at least $75,000 in punitive damages from Disney and Lucasfilm. She is also requesting a court order mandating that Lucasfilm rehire her.
“Artists do not sign away our rights as American citizens when we enter into employment,” she wrote.
“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,” the statement continued. “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.”
Elon Musk shared the statement and invited others to “join the lawsuit against Disney” as well.
Please let us know if you would like to join the lawsuit against Disney https://t.co/FnMxhUQvVA
— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) February 6, 2024
The full statement from Gina Carano can be read below:
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 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. 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.
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.
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.
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.
A couple months ago Elon Musk 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. 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 whole-heartedly in my case & are moving forward.
I would like to express my deepest gratitude & thank you to [Elon Musk] & [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.
For inquiries contact:
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