Danny Boyle and Universal Studios have found themselves in a bizarre position after the imposition of legal action due to a directorial choice involving Ana de Armas. This has happened because some scenes featuring de Armas were cut from Boyle’s 2019 musical comedy Yesterday which became a commercial success and grossed over $150 million.
Ana de Armas has risen to the top of the American film industry through performances in films such as Blade Runner 2049 and Knives Out before starring as a Bond girl in the latest James Bond flick No Time to Die which came out last year. According to reports, de Armas was supposed to feature in Yesterday as well but her scenes were cut.
Boyle’s film presents the absurd premise that a struggling musician enters an alternate reality after being hit by a bus. In his new world, nobody knows anything about Harry Potter or Coca-Cola but the absence that he capitalises on is the lack of recognition for songs by The Beatles which he sings to audiences and claims that they belong to him.
Ana de Armas was cast to play the love interest for the protagonist (Himesh Patel) but her scenes were cut as the project already exceeded the time constraints set by the studio. However, she was featured in the trailer for the film alongside James Corden and that has become the central point for the lawsuit which claims the trailer is misleading.
A class action lawsuit has been filed by two fans of Ana de Armas who have called out Universal for “deceptive marketing” and have sued them for $5 million. According to them, they only bought the film because they saw Ana de Armas in the trailer and when they sat through the entire thing and she didn’t appear, they felt duped.
The lawsuit reads: “Because consumers were promised a movie with Ana de Armas by the trailer for Yesterday but did not receive a movie with any appearance of Ana de Armas at all, such consumers were not provided with any value for their rental or purchase.”
Adding, “Unable to rely on fame of the actors playing Jack Malik or Ellie (Lily James) to maximise ticket and movie sales and rentals, Defendant consequently used Ms. de Armas’ fame, radiance, and brilliance to promote the film by including her scenes in the movie trailers advertising Yesterday.”
Watch the trailer for Yesterday below.