In 2009, a local court in Meerut booked producer-director Boney Kapoor, his wife Sridevi, filmmaker Prabudheva and actor Salman Khan in a case of alleged copyright infringement and plagiarism for their action-drama, Wanted. Petitioner Birbal Singh Rana, a local writer-director, alleged that Kapoor’s production house, BSK Network and Entertainment, had stolen his original script, Raja Bhai IPS, for their film. Birbal, in his petition claimed, that he had submitted his copyright script to the company in 2004, but it was rejected and later re-created for their own project.
The team of Wanted denied the allegations, but in August 2010 the Additional Chief Judicial Magistrate, BD Bharti, directed them to be present before the court on November 22. When they did a no-show, a non-bailable warrant was issued against them. Later, Boney decided to seek redemption from the Allahabad High Court.
After a period of seven years, Boney has won the case against Birbal Singh Rana. On Tuesday, the Allahabad High Court acquitted Kapoor of all the charges. It also came to light that Birbal had been blackmailing Boney, demanding an out-of-court settlement of Rs 75 lakh. The Additional Government Advocate, RD Yadav, ruling in favour of Kapoor said, “This kind of extortion is becoming a practise by miscreants who target high-profile celebrities. There is no copyright violation of the idea, subject matter, theme, plot or historical or legendary facts. The applicant (Boney and Co.) are innocent and have not committed the present offence.”
alking to Mumbai Mirror about the issue he said, “This kind of extortion is becoming a practice by miscreants who target high-profile celebrities. There is no copyright violation of the idea, subject matter, theme, plot or historical or legendary facts. The applicant (Boney and Co.) are innocent and have not committed the present offence,” He stated further, “I have legally bought the rights to and remade 16 films. In the case of Wanted, I not only bought the rights from Prabhudheva who had directed the Tamil version, and eventually the Hindi remake, but also from Puri Jagannadh, who was the original creator and producer of the 2006-Telugu film, Pokiri. I was shocked when I got the first summons, more so when the lower court in Meerut accused us of copyright infringement without proper verification of the script. The petitioner then started harassing and blackmailing us, trying to extort money for no fault of ours.”
Ask Boney if the impending court case roadblocked Part 2 and he exclaims, “No way! I would never let a case like this hinder the sequel. I will roll with Wanted 2 whenever I have the right script for the film. It is very difficult to imagine Wanted 2 without Salman,” he says.
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