Actor Shah Rukh Khan, who has repeatedly been claiming credit for the concept of his superhero film RA.One was taken to court on Friday for plagiarising TV writer and producer Yash Patnaik’s story.
So far neither Khan, nor anyone from his team commented on the issue, but on Saturday afternoon, the film’s screenwriter Mushtaq Sheikh made a statement on the microblogging site Twitter saysing: “Sometimes worthy works get mixed with unrelated people, who want their 15 minutes of ‘fame’ (Yash). Creepy maggots will do anything for publicity! (sic)”.
Unmoved by the comment, Patnaik feels it will only work in his favour. “He is challenging the high court’s judgement,” says the artiste, who had first pitched his story to Sheikh back in 2006. “My team worked on it for six years. Mushtaq was supposed to give the script to Shah Rukh as he used to work with him.”
On Friday, a division bench of chief justice Mohit Shah and justice Roshan Dalvi asked Khan’s production house Red Chillies Entertainment and co-distributors Eros Entertainment to deposit R 1 crore with the Bombay High Court, after observing a copyright violation. If the defendants fail to do so by Saturday, an injunction against the film’s October 26 release will be operational. The court will hear the case in November next.
Patnaik sought an injunction against the release of the film on October 1, this year. He claims he registered the concept with the Film Writers Association on December 26, 2006.
“Our first hearing was on October 12,” he says, adding that “he wants to be paid only if the makers refuse to give him credit in the film”. “They have taken the concept and they should give me credit. People should be aware,” says Patnaik, insistent. “I don’t know if the prints have gone out or how they will make the changes. They still have the India release, and the broadcast and DVD release? If the intension is there, I’m sure they can do it.” Patnaik also apparently has demanded being given 10 per cent of the film’s profit share. “I am not saying ‘pay me the money and I’m happy’.
If they can’t incorporate the credit where do I go? They have taken everything away.”