Elon Musk’s X Financing Gina Carano Suit Against Disney, Lucasfilm

Posted on: February 6, 2024, 09:29h. 

Last updated on: February 8, 2024, 11:45h.

Elon Musk’s X, the social media platform formerly known as Twitter, is financially backing actor Gina Carano’s wrongful termination lawsuit against Walt Disney (NYSE: DIS). Carano’s family is the largest noninstitutional investor in Caesars Entertainment (NASDAQ: CZR).

Gina Carano
Actor Gina Carano. Elon Musk’s X is backing her lawsuit against Disney. (Image: CTV News)

Carano was fired from her role on the Disney+ streaming series The Mandalorian in 2021. The dismissal came after a post she made on Instagram and TikTok likened being conservative on social media to being Jewish in Nazi Germany. That wasn’t her first bout with social media controversy, as she previously used Twitter to criticize coronavirus lockdowns while noting her pronouns were “beep/bop/boop.”

In a Tuesday filing with the U.S. District Court for the Central District of California, counsel for Carano listed Disney, Lucasfilm, and Huckleberry Industries as defendants.

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,” according to the complaint. “And so it was with Carano. After two highly acclaimed seasons on The Mandalorian as Rebel ranger Cara Dune, Carano was terminated from her role as swiftly as her character’s peaceful home planet of Alderaan had been destroyed by the Death Star in an earlier Star Wars film.”

Carano’s attorneys claim she was fired by Disney when the company was run by former CEO Bob Chapek for no other reason than that she was outspoken on social media.

Carano Suit Has Gaming Angles Galore

Carano is the granddaughter of Don Carano, the late executive considered the patriarch of the Eldorado Resorts empire, which is now Caesars Entertainment. Through a series of acquisitions and smart executive hires, including current CEO Tom Reeg, the Carano family took Eldorado from a sleepy regional casino operator to the largest gaming empire in the U.S. by number of properties — a transformation that culminated in Eldorado’s $17.3 billion takeover of “old Caesars” in 2020.

Today, Glenn Carano, Gina’s father, is the senior vice president of operations for the East region for Eldorado — a role he’s held for nearly seven years. The UNLV alumni also played quarterback for the Dallas Cowboys for six years, backing up Hall of Famer Roger Staubach for part of his tenure with the team.

Gary Carano, Gina’s uncle, is Caesars’ executive chairman. He was the architect of several acquisitions in the 2010s that bolstered Eldorado’s size and geographic reach. The family’s stake in Caesars is worth approximately $1 billion.

As for Disney, its ties to the gaming industry include, most notably, the recently launched ESPN Bet. Disney licenses the name of its popular sports network to Penn Entertainment (NASDAQ: PENN) for use on the mobile app.

Musk Backs External Litigation

In financing Carano’s Disney suit, Musk is living up to his pledge last August to cover legal expenses for X users who received unfair treatment from employers “due to posting or liking something on this platform.”

Musk’s support of Carano’s litigation isn’t the first instance of a billionaire funding civil litigation on behalf of another person. LinkedIn founder Reid Hoffman paid E. Jean Carroll’s legal bills in her civil case against former President Donald Trump, a trial in which she was recently awarded damages of $83.3 million.

For her part, Carano said she responded to Musk’s offer and was surprised when a lawyer from X reached out to her.

“I would like to express my deepest gratitude & thank you to @ElonMusk& @X for giving me an opportunity to bring my case to light.,” she wrote in a post on the platform on Tuesday.