Megastar Amitabh Bachchan starrer Jhund will not be released for the time being after the Supreme Court on November 18 declined to lift the stay granted by the civil court and Telangana High Court against the release of the movie. A bench of Chief Justice S A Bobde and Justices A S Bopanna and V Ramasubramanian dismissed the appeal filed by petitioner Super Cassettes Industries (T Series) against the October 19 order of the high court which had refused to interfere with the trial court order restraining the release of the movie in India as well as abroad.
The film, based on the life of Vijay Barse, the founder of NGO Slum Soccer, was scheduled to be released this month on OTT platform Amazon Prime. The petition filed by a Hyderabad-based short-film maker Nandi Chinni Kumar has alleged copyright infringement against the filmmaker, whether true life events of a real person which are already in the public domain can be considered 'property' which can be brought and sold and whether the same will be entitled to copyright protection.
According to Bar and Bench, the appellant, Super Cassettes Industries Private Limited (known as T-Series), had claimed that the movie is based on the life of football coach, Vijay Barse who is portrayed in the film by Amitabh Bachchan. Hence, it was submitted the High Court was wrong to grant an injunction against the release of the film on the assumption that there is copyright infringement in the life story of one Akhilesh Paul, who was the captain of the Indian Slum Soccer team coached by Barse.
The trial court, on September 17, 2020, ruled in favour of Kumar and restrained Super Cassettes from exhibiting the movie till the conclusion of the case. This order was upheld by the Telangana High Court on October 19, leading to the present appeal before the apex court. The company Super Cassettes has said in their petition filed in the top court that they have invested a significant amount in production, distribution, marketing, and promotion and have also created third party rights on the film which is to be broadcast on a wide scale both nationally and internationally, else they will face a huge loss.
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