Delhi High Court asks producers to settle copyright infringement dispute with writer; plaintiff claims he only wants credit in the film and is not requesting a stay on its release scheduled April 11 .
The Delhi High Court on Tuesday asked the producers of Amitabh Bachchan-starrer Bhootnath Returns to sit across the table and settle the dispute over copyright infringement as alleged by a Hindi writer.
Sushant Supriya, in his suit filed in the Court, alleged that the film is based on his short story. A Division Bench of Justice B.D. Ahmed and Justice Siddharth Mridul asked both parties to sit together to see whether the dispute could be settled amicably.
The plaintiff alleged the heart of the movie was a complete adaptation of his literary work. He referred to nine shots in the movie and said they had been copied from his short story Bhootnath published in 2007 in Hindi magazine Aaj Kal.
The plaintiff said he was not pleading for a stay on the scheduled release of the film on April 11. He only wanted credit in the film.
It is notable that even the first Bhootnath film was a copy of the The Canterville Ghost, a short story by Oscar Wilde. The defendants had never made an original film on the theme of a friendly ghost and had not done so in the case of the infringing film as well, the suit alleged.
“Unlike most sequels, the infringing film is based on an entirely new storyline from the first Bhootnath film and has no relationship with the first film. This demonstrates that the infringing film has appropriated the plaintiffs’ original literary work,’’ the suit said.