Former “Mandalorian” actress Gina Carano claims she and unnamed others were “bullied” and “headhunted” by Disney following backlash over her controversial social media posts.
In her first sitdown interview since the controversy began, Carano maintained to conservative commentator Ben Shapiro that she did no wrong after she lost her role on the Disney+ series.
“I was prepared at any point to be let go, because I’ve seen this happen to so many people,” Carano said of her “Mandalorian” role on Sunday’s edition of “The Ben Shapiro Show.” “I’ve seen the looks on their faces. I’ve seen the bullying that takes place, and so when this started, they point their guns at you, and you know it’s only a matter of time. … They’re making it very obvious through their employees who were coming for me, and so I was like, ‘I’m going to go down swinging and I’m going to stay true to myself.’ “
USA TODAY has reached out to Disney, Lucasfilm and Carano for comment.
The Daily Wire, which Shapiro co-founded, announced earlier this month that Carano would partner with the news site to produce and star in an upcoming film.
“This is just the beginning,” Carano wrote on Twitter at the time. “Welcome to the rebellion.”
“My body is still shaking,” she told Shaprio on Sunday. “It’s devastating, but the thought of this happening to anybody else, especially to somebody who could not handle this the way I can, no, they don’t get to do that. They don’t get to make people feel like that. … If I buckle, it’ll make it OK for these companies, who have a history of lying, to be lying and to do this to other people … and I’m not going down without a fight.”
On Feb. 10, Carano received backlash online for sharing a series of incendiary social media posts and memes mentioning Jeffrey Epstein and comparing conservatives in the U.S. to Holocaust victims. Lucasfilm later confirmed to USA TODAY that Carano would no longer star in “The Mandalorian.”
In her appearance Sunday on Shapiro’s podcast, Carano said she did not feel the post was controversial and that the message was about bringing people together.
“I’ve got every single big publication saying she’s comparing conservatives and Republicans to this and that’s not really what I was doing,” she said. “I have love for everyone, I’m not a hateful person.”
“Saturday Night Live” touched on the Carano controversy in its Feb. 20 show: Cecily Strong played Carano on a talk show hosted by Britney Spears (Chloe Fineman) in which famous faces including Texas Sen. Ted Cruz and New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo made public apologies.
Strong’s Carano lacked remorse: “Look, I never would’ve made that Nazi comparison if I’d known everybody was going to be such a Nazi about it,” she said.
Contributing: Brian Truitt and Charles Trepany
Ex-‘Mandalorian’ star Gina Carano partners with Daily Wire:‘They can’t cancel us if we don’t let them’
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