Elon Musk is backing a lawsuit filed by Gina Carano against Disney and Lucasfilm for wrongful termination and discrimination after the actress claimed she was dropped from The Mandalorian for expressing her “personal political opinions”.
The complaint, filed at the California District Court, is being financially supported by X Corp, the Musk-owned social media platform formerly known as Twitter.
Carano, who began her career as a mixed martial arts fighter, starred in two series of The Mandalorian as Rebel ranger Cara Dune before she was fired in February 2021 over political opinions she expressed on social media, the lawsuit said.
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
At the time, Lucasfilm released a statement saying her “social media posts denigrating people based on their cultural and religious identities are abhorrent and unacceptable”.
The court documents filed on Tuesday suggest Disney and Lucasfilm “targeted, harassed, publicly humiliated, defamed, and went to great lengths to destroy Carano’s career”.
Lawyer Gene Schaerr, managing partner at Schaerr Jaffe, said: “Disney bullied Ms Carano, trying to force her to conform to their views about cultural and political issues, and when that bullying failed, they fired her.
“Punishing employees for their speech on political or social issues is illegal under California law.”
During her career, Carano has starred in other Hollywood franchises including Fast & Furious 6 as Riley Hicks, and Deadpool, where she played Angel Dust.
Carano said: “We rely on our leaders and people in positions of power to be just, cool-headed and steady-handed and to be able to listen to all sides of the story, keep the peace and act justly.
“Some of us have been unjustly singled out, harassed, persecuted and had our livelihoods stripped away because we dared to encourage conversation, asked questions, and refused to go along with the mob.”
Carano also said she is “honoured” that Tesla chief executive Musk has chosen to support her lawsuit.
“As a sign of X Corp’s commitment to free speech, the online platform is proud to provide financial support for 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,” a statement from the company said.
A representative for Disney and Lucasfilm has been contacted for comment.