Gina Carano’s LOLsuit

In the interests of personal responsibility, I feel I need to open with a clarification that when a billionaire (Elon Musk) funds a washed up celebrity (Gina Carano) to sue a multi-billion dollar mega-corporation (Disney) with a baseless case – it’s a LOLsuit and should be viewed as a spectacle.

When rich assholes sue regular people with baseless defamation suits, it’s class terrorism and needs to be stomped out.

Also I’m not a lawyer, more importantly I’m not your lawyer so this is not personalized legal advice to anyone (especially not Gina Carano) and I strongly urge you to never take legal advice off a blog, or ever believe you have a lawyer-client relationship with a blogger. Also I’m doing this without Westlaw or Lexis so someone who is practicing can probably find some info I can’t.


Gina Carano is a former MMA champion who initially attempted to moved into Ultimate Fighting (UFC) but bowed out after a crushing loss in 2009.

She then pivoted into acting where she struggled to meet the expectation of audiences with emotional range, though did score a fairly high profile role in the first Deadpool movie and eventually found a niche as re-occurring character Cara Dune in Star Wars: Mandalorian. It went so well, Disney was in talks with setting up a spinoff show with her as not just a member of the main cast, but the lead.

This all got derailed when Carano engaged in a truly baffling series of public maneuvers where she would mock the concept of sharing pronouns, do an interview where she assures us she’s note hateful… and then announce she was signing up for reactionary social media site Parler while asserting people asking her to not mock pronouns were the real bullies. Ultimately, when the press got bad enough, Disney did what Disney does and dumped her out the airlock.

Carano then eliminated any doubt that she as onboard with bigotry and regressive politics by agreeing to partner with Daily Wire – who promised to give her the opportunity to make her own movie, her way. The result was Terror on the Prairie (2022) – a film which Daily Wire viewers dismiss for being too “woke” for showcasing that… Gina Carano existed?

In 2023, billionaire manchild and advocate for technofascism, Elon Musk – having scuttled Twitter – announced that if anyone had been fired for anything they posted on Twitter, he would support them in suing their employer. No limit.

In early 2024, we discovered that he’d selected Gina Carano as a high profile beneficiary of this promise and… well, it’s bad.

The complaint

The complaint (available on Court Listener) drafted by Gina Carano’s lawyers starts by cribbing from the classic Star Wars opening crawl – made famous by Star Wars IV: A New Hope and a staple of the property ever since. After the first line… it gets bad.

A screenshot of the complaint, under the title of INTRODUCTION, "A short time ago in a galaxy not so far away, Defendants made it clear that only one orthodoxy in thought, speech, or action was acceptable in their empire, and that those who dared to question or failed to fully comply would not be tolerated."

The basis of claim essentially boil down to:

  1. Bob Chapek fired Gina Carano because she did not line up with company values, not her performance as an actress (making it doubly hilarious that Elon Musk is funding this… given his firing spree at Twitter)
  2. Disney apparently “targeted, harassed, publicly humiliated, defamed and went to great lengths to destroy Carano’s career” by… stating they had negative opinions on her tweets?
  3. Bob Chapek is somehow objectively wrong on his opinion on if Carano stands for the values of “respect, decency, integrity, and inclusion”.
  4. Gina Carano has a right to free speech…

It is in many ways, less a formal complaint and more of a long winded continuation of Gina’s bad tweet comparing right-wingers with bad tweets to victims of pre-Nazi Germany.

To substantiate the damages, in very glossy retelling of Gina’s career, mentioning that she was paid $25,000 per appearance in The Mandolorian and then that she was to receive $100,000 – $250,000 per episode of the spinoff, Rangers of the New Republic.

And um… their case is not very good, while they do lay out some examples of her getting called means and stuff… that Vanity Fair article I linked to above with the write up about all the weird reactionary nonsense she participated in, including victim blaming? That’s one of their earlier pieces of evidence that Gina did nothing wrong. Yeah.

Then there’s 14 pages of tweets, starting with people dunking on Gina and then increasingly posting Gina’s own tweets in isolation… as if her random statements somehow create an objective change in reality.

Then it moves on to claim the Disney & Lucasfilm (a Disney subsidiary) actively moved to destroy her by…. giving her opportunities to talk with GLAAD, queer Lucasfilm employees, etc… all reframed as some sort of conspiracy to allow people to bully Gina… and that when Gina said she wanted to lawyer up… Disney wanted her to do media training.

Then there’s three more pages of mean tweets by people who are not Disney.

Then there’s a retelling off of evens around Disney and them not liking that there was a #FireGinaCarano tag on Twitter (also something about how they should be cancelled because they cooperate with China… is it awkward to mention Saudi Arabia is a major shareholder of Twitter/X?)

Following this… they pivot right into using a Bounding Into Comics article as evidence of Disney endorsing racism against white people. The article itself, being a pretty good demonstration of what attempting to bully people for having reasonable opinions actually looks like. If you’re not familiar with the credibility of Bounding Into Comics then…

A screenshot of some recent articles including, one specifying Tomb Raider's remasters will "Remain Uncensored, Instead Featuring Performative Disclaiming Condemning "Harmful Impact" Of Original Games" and "Newly Leaked Video Suggests Disney's Turn To Politics Was Driven By Bob Iger's Opposition To Jan 6th: "We Should Be Taking A Stand""
A screesnhot of Bounding Into Comics YouTube videos, views are normally in the 76 to 655 views, with the exception being the "Elon and Gina sue Disney" video which gives Gina laser eyes, and has 2.1k views.

Not really a source I’d be relying upon for a million dollar lawsuit…

Then the follow up with an even more absurd stance, where they rely upon a warble by right-wing reactionary and culture war enthusiast, Jeremy Lee Quinn (who like most supporters of fascism claims he has no side) which attempts to argue there was an organized effort to persecute Gina Carano for her resharing an image which asked what was the real difference between the persecution of Jews in pre-Nazi Germany and… opposing political opinions. Again… not A+ material here.

It then goes on to try to state that Gina’s weird statement was somehow the same as the late, great Carl Weathers stating he did not trust Nazis to decide what his children could read… and sharing the accurate breakdown about Nazis which does not compare Jews to a political group.

This entire fiasco is made very funny by the fact that all through the previous arguments, they make take great pains to state that Gina had been sort people into groups… specifically she would not engage with anyone she concluded to be in the anti-Gina-Carano group. So um… yeah.

And they restate that they felt Chapek’s comment about Carano “denigrating people based on their cultural and religious identities” gets mentioned because… reasons.

It then claims that NatGeo (another Disney subsidiary) campaign refraining from using the episode of Running Wild with Gina in it for a while, then never using Gina in the marketing of it was somehow… an attack at Gina and not simply a marketing decision consistent with their stance that she was bad press… somehow… (it’s never explained).

They then provide the “aftermath” which is…. unrelated positive opinions by some other recurring cast members, and a Forbes article (in the Entertainment section) which agrees Carano was out of line and while the complaint says it agrees Disney were “wrong” to fire her… the writer is not so strident.

So, apparently taking it’s lead from this article it then moves on to try to paint Disney as sexist because of the posts by Pedro Pascal and Mark Hamill. Now, there’s a few important differences with Pedro that they gloss over:

  1. Pedro’s posts were comparing Donald Trump to Nazis, celebrating LGBTQ identities and generally calling for less fascism and violence.
  2. Unlike Gina, Pedro did not dig his heels in and announce the posts where a hill he’d die on – instead he deleted the more inflammatory ones.
  3. Pedro is the literal star of The Mandolorian and an immensely hot commodity as an actor – Gina was a recurring member who was starting to find her footing.

It also follows up with several examples of Mark Hammill doing things like…

  • Referring to a Nazi salute at a Republican event as “a Nazi thing”
  • Having negative opinions on Trump and his relationship with Putin
  • Pointing out Donald Trump’s tendency to crib from Nazi imagery and making spelling mistakes
  • Apologizing for that time he liked a transphobic JK Rowling tweet

Also they cited the event where James Gunn got cancelled by the right-wing mob ranting about his old tweets (that he’d long sing apologized for)… then got rehired when Disney realized it was bullshit.

So basically… they kind of illustrated that the male stars… avoided harsh consequences through being more careful about what they said, and being accountable for their actions… a curious strategy.

The law

So after all that – they get around to the list of actual claims:

  • Wrongful discharge under section 1101 onward of the California Labor Code

    Essentially they argue it was unlawful for Disney to fire Gina and discontinue the role of her character in The Mandolorian by way of Disney was not permitted to prevent her participating in politics or seeking public office.

    Oddly this means Elon is now supporting the notion that tweeting opinions is legally political action.

    They cite Smedley v. Capps, Staples, Ward, Hastings & Dodson, 820 F. Supp. 1227, 1230 (N.D. Cal. 1993), Ross v. Indep. Living Res. of Contra Costa Cnty., No. C08-00854 TEH, 2010 WL 1266497, (a superior court ruling… so not binding to the District Court) and Gay L. Students Assn. v. Pac. Tel. & Tel. Co., 595 P.2d 592, 611 (1979) which all essentially argue that if people are not allowed to be fired for being gay or disabled, Gina should not be fired for being a piece of shit on social media and in interviews.

    They also cite Napear v. Bonneville Int’l Corp., No. 2:21-CV-01956DAD-DB, 2023 WL 4747623 which is an ongoing case about a radio host getting fired for saying “All Lives Matter” when asked his opinion on Black Lives Matter… the court is mostly concerned about the sufficiency of filings and legal arguments.

  • Wrongful discharge and refusal to hire under section section 98.6 of the California Labor Code

    They argue it was unlawful for Disney not to follow up with the plans to hire her for other roles, use her in marketing for other appearances, etc.

    There is no case law supplied to support this.

  • Sex discrimination under section 12940 of the California Government Code

    They argue it was unlawful to fire Gina because Disney did not fire Pedro and Mark, and to rehire James Gunn.

    Again… they supply no case law.

Wrongful discharge

This is the action most strongly supported by authorities… in theory, but also the one which has the biggest red flag in that they do no reference the terms of Gina’s employment in any way, shape or form. There’s no excerpts from her contract, no email with the offer of employment, etc.

The core protein of their argument is that employers in California are absolutely not allowed to fire you because of your political activities.

No employer shall coerce or influence or attempt to coerce or influence his employees through or by means of threat of discharge or loss of employment to adopt or follow or refrain from adopting or following any particular course or line of political action or political activity.

Section 1102, California Labor Code

The reason the lack of contracts etc is a giant red flag, is because the way this action works is under 1102.6 – Gina has to show there it was more than likely there was a basis for firing her based on her politics… and then all that Disney has to prove is they would have fired her anyway, even if it wasn’t about her politics.

They raise Smedley as proof that Disney cannot bar Gina from being political outside the “office” (ie off set) but somehow want to gloss over that it was explicitly about the right to be out of the closet, six years before Ellen DeGeneres created an uproar by simply coming out on national television.

Smedley, while an important part of Sexual Orientation Law in California – never reached a definitive ruling – all references to it are to a denial for summary judgement on the basis of they need to hash out some of the details in more depth.

The lack of definitive ruling is important, because in Smedley the court was uncertain if the plaintiff discussing her sexuality with clients was automatically political action…. but the legislation was updated the next year to lock that it as very clearly that you can’t tell gay employees to shush about being gay.

Ross v. Independent is a bizarre case to raise since the sections relevant to sections 1101 and 1102 are in regards to him suing a third party, and disclosing information to the state…. two things that Gina definitely claim that Disney fired her over. They quote the “allegation was sufficient” part, without looking at the context that the court spent five long paragraphs discussing the allegation to come to that conclusion.

Overall it’s not a great case for anything other than to maybe avoid desperately avoid dismissal, and the fact that such a thing is in their opening complaint is not a good sign. It bodes for a lot of whining about the court is being unfair to their client, who has the support of at least one billionaire… but was bullied by random people in Twitter… so doesn’t that make her a bigger victim than a regular person?

Gay Students is, alongside Smedley (which cites it) another important part of Sexual Orientation Law in California. It has, essentially nothing to do with Gina Carano’s claim (and actually kind of hurts it, more on that later). Notably the excerpt they use is the court… citing another case as the basis of the rule.

So it kinda looks like the research they did for this was to look for important cases in Sexual Orientation Law history and skip over the ones that are too on the nose (like the Shell executive who was unjustly fired for safe sex guides, the unjust part being explicitly because of the political nature of the AIDS epidemic on the gay community)1 Collins v. Shell Oil Co., 60 U.S.L.W. 2092 (Cal. App. Dep’t Super. Ct. June 13, 1991)

A screenshot of the classic wint (@dril) tweet: "the wise man bowed his head solemnly and spoke: "theres actually zero difference between good & bad things. you imbecile. you fucking moron"
A classic shitpost, but also apparently the core argument of Carano’s counsel.

It needs be remarked, that when I say that… I mean they really had to go out of their way to do that – since Gay Students itself points out that in 1979 – non-discrimination on the basis of sexuality hadn’t been incorporated into the system – so the main body that was supposed to prevent it was powerless. This workaround was necessary in that era… and then 12 years later (Smedley) until they finally did update the legislation in 1992.

So this is all extremely convoluted and does nothing to get ahead of Disney claiming they fired her for literally any other reason… such as she’d created a situation where her reputation was a liability – and cite say, Kelsey Grammer as a conservative actor who has managed to avoid firebombing his own career.

They can probably support this by pointing out that nobody else wants to hire Gina… including Ben Shapiro. Speaking of which.

…and refusal to hire.

This would be a particularly difficult one to put through at the best of times, since courts are extremely reluctant to issue damages based on speculative losses. Sure, Gina could have ended up with six seasons and a movie, or her show could have been cancelled midway through filming the first episode due to changes in the marketing data, etc. The common term is “purely economic loss”.

This is supported by one of their own authorities:

Nonetheless, it is not our function to tell employers, large or small, whom to employ. Courts should not attempt to police general employment practices in the absence of some clear constitutional or statutory authority.

Justice Tobriner for the dissenting, Gay L. Students Assn. v. Pac. Tel. & Tel. Co., 595 P.2d 592, 611 (1979)

Told you that’d bite them in the ass.

Yeah, Gay Students wasn’t a slam dunk decision, three of the seven justices who ruled on it opposed it on the basis that they felt that while gay people should have equal rights… the government shouldn’t interfere in hiring. Their stance is bullshit, but there were able to reach for various pieces of history and doctrine to argue for it in a professional manner.

Gina’s case has to overcome all that on the basis of “Gina should be allowed to compare mean tweets directed at her to the early stages of attempted genocide with no public or professional backlash.”

With my limited resources looking for examples of linking section 98.6, I can’t find any that match a good fact pattern for Gina’s situation – the only ones linked to social media are not for publication and if one existed regarding bad tweets… it’d have gone viral on the bad tweet site.

Sex discrimination

This one is by far the worst as the comparison cases aren’t really compatible.

Carl Weathers expressed some pretty normal opinions – that he didn’t trust Nazis to decide what books his children could or could not read.

Pedro Pascal is the star of the show, and routinely removed inflammatory social media posts and brought no #FirePedro campaigns on Disney. He never signed up on Parler, or any other niche website with a horrendous reputation etc.

Mark Hamill is the legendary actor who was the star of the original Star Wars series, and much like Pedro Pascal is not prone to creating a campaign pointing out he is hateful toward a protected group, or otherwise inherently inflammatory.

What Gina really needs to make this case in a convincing manner, is either smoking gun evidence (ie an email on a server saying they would not fire her if she was a man) or a case of a male actor who was a similar or less involved recurring character getting away with being at least controversial.

And again, Disney is entitled to demonstrate that they had a valid reason to fire her… and a final reminder, they haven’t shown anything from her contracts, promises from the Disney executives, etc.

I suspect this is the reason that, despite this claim being theoretically straight forward – Carano’s counsel was unable to find a single case with similar facts and a desirable outcome.


This isn’t a lawsuit brought with a realistic expectation of a positive outcome for the client (“Gina Carano”), and it’s unclear if she realizes it if she approved of her counsel submitting this on her behalf.

It’s a lawsuit that is primarily for attempting to provide theatrics, and will almost certainly be dismissed after being dragged out by CaranoMusk’s counsel… for the benefit of Elon, and his fascist contemporaries.

Detriment to Gina Carano

Best case scenario, if by a miracle Carano’s team are able to find a smoking gun email from Bob Chapek that says “I am going to fire Gina Carano no other reason than she expressed her personal politics and because I hate that she’s a woman – unlike Pedro Pascal and Mark Hamill. I’m gonna violate her rights and she can’t stop me!” All she’s going to get out of it is money.

If she gets five million dollars – that’s going have to last her for the rest of her life, because she’s never going to work as an actress again, she’s not going to get a TV series… she doesn’t have an audience that want to see her. She’s too fascist for most people, and too…. a non-bimbo woman for the reactionaries.

The most likely outcome of this is Gina comes out more disliked and more unemployable than ever…. and if Disney finds a way to counter-sue, she’ll be more broke than ever too.

And that isn’t the only risk she runs doing this, defamation suits risky for the plaintiff because when they enter the Discover phase (where each side can compel the other to surrender relevant documents) the defendant gets to demand anything they think will decontextualize the conversation, or otherwise impeach the plaintiff.

So yeah, Gina is look to coming out of this more disliked, more unemployable, more broke and more publicly humiliated.

Benefit to Musk

The benefits to Musk are pretty obvious.

First he gets to pretend he’s actually a free speech advocate, and not just a boring fascist who only wants his fellow fascists to have freedom of speech within the parameters he sets (every fascist thinks they should be the

He’s currently in a slew of lawsuits about unjust termination of employment (Twitter), abusive work conditions (Tesla), and given his tendency to impregnate his executives (Neuralink) and sexually harass a hostess (SpaceX), he’s doubtlessly got all kinds of harassment and discrimination suits coming on top of these – and a lot of them will be in California.

That’s not to say that there’s any chance of this helping him with those – but you can bet that he’s planning on countless tweets and talks about – just how it’s unfair for advertisers to abandon him just because he’s leading to their brands being showcased alongside Nazi tweets – it’s unfair for the court to side against him, an employer, and against Gina, an employee.

And finally, there’s the inescapable detail that it lines up with Bob Iger taking the most milquetoast explanation, designed not to hurt Elon’s feelings, for why Disney would not be buying ads.

A tweet by Elon Musk (@elonmusk) on 8 February 2024, "Walt Disney would despise Bob Iger"
Elon is definitely mad about this

Benefit to fascists in general

Of course, Elon wouldn’t do this on his own – he’s a cowardly rich kid who feels he’s the victim when he bullies others, and has done since he was a child.

Disney, being the iconic super capitalists who prioritize money above all, have increasingly become the Big Bad for many groups and individuals who claim to favour capitalism and the Free Marketplace of Ideas.

Most notable is Ron DeSantis who has been waging war on Disney for not being actively homophobic, and losing badly.

Because they’re realizing that the unavoidable reality of the “Free Marketplace of Ideas” is that it will expand out and put more power in the hands of the many, who the few are reliant upon to generate sales, views, etc.

So, it seems awful convenient that Elon has decided to also try to harass Disney, chosen to use Sexual Orientation Law to do so… and has taken the ultra cowardly approach of just funding a lawsuit of a woman is exceptional…

Sorry I just realized of the possibility that Elon is also trying to impregnate Gina Carano and threw up in my mouth a little bit.

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    Collins v. Shell Oil Co., 60 U.S.L.W. 2092 (Cal. App. Dep’t Super. Ct. June 13, 1991)

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