Passing the Copyright Amendment Bill will resolve many issues

MUMBAI: How does one react on the issue of copyright when a person appeals to a Court to remove a dialogue of the Salman Khan starrer ‘Veer’ because this person had uttered it some years earlier?

The filmmaker had to finally give in after which the dialogues were indeed deleted from the film on grounds that ‘the expression of the person while uttering the dialogue was copied.’

Said Anand And Anand Managing Director Rahul Ajatshatru, “Our lawyers and judges are not well versed with the Copyright Act while talking about the subject or passing an order on this topic. It is time the Copyright Amendment Bill is passed.”

Agreeing, Film Federation of India Secretary General Supran Sen said, “Some years ago the Mumbai High Court had said that if a particular video of a film is shown at home nothing happens, but if it is shown in society then copyright is infringed. This issue was challenged in the Madras High Court that said the Bombay High Court stand was wrong. Later it held that special courts should be set up to hear these matters.”

The matter led to a lot of debate after which it was decided to come out with a Copyright Amendment Bill. But though this has been through the Lok Sabha, it is yet to get the approval of the Rajya Sabha. “Hopefully this would be done after the Budget session of Parliament,” opined Amarchand Managing Partner Shardul Shroff.

The views were expressed during a discussion on the process of IP transfer and its legal ramifications in the specific case of film remakes during the FICCI Frames. RCL Motion Pictures head and producer Jagdish Rajpurohit, UTV Motion Pictures creative director Amar Butala, French Embassy, TV & Cinema head Deborah Benattar and International Federation of Film Producers Association former Director General Bertrand Mouiller also spoke.

Referring to RCL Motion Pictures obtaining the copyright of the French film ‘L’emmerduer’, Rajpurohit said:” “When we approached the French film producers, they were a little inquisitive, but decided to give us the remaking rights after some thought.”

But they will decide on associating with the Hindi remake ‘Bumboo’ after they come down to India and see whether the makers have followed the content verbatim or have deviated from the same. “I am sure they will be happy after watching the film and associate with our film,” observed Rajpurohit. The film releases in India on 31 July.

Butala said: “These days things have changed a lot and producers don’t want to go to Court on matters of copyright infringement. They sort the matter amicably.”

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