Deepika Padukone in the Levi's ad(Instagram)
Deepika Padukone in the Levi's ad(Instagram)

Deepika Padukone's Levi's ad set ripped off from Sooni Taraporevala's Yeh Ballet

Sooni Taraporevala shared images of scenes from the Levi's ad and from her film, Yeh Ballet, sharing "No such dance studio exists in Mumbai which is why we built it. Basically the director of this (Levi's) ad saw Yeh Ballet and decided to plagiarize our set down to the very last detail."
By Alfea Jamal, Hindustan Times, Delhi
UPDATED ON MAR 04, 2021 04:11 PM IST

Deepika Padukone was recently seen dancing her heart out in the latest ad for well-known denim brand Levi's. The ad shows the Padmaavat actor as well as other women going about their daily routine, dancing, playing music, riding bikes and plenty more, while wearing their denims as the 1982 classic song Auva Auva from Disco Dancer (in the voice of Usha Uthup and Bappi Lahiri) plays in the background. The message of the ad was simple, 'When You Take A Step...We All Move!', and while the ad may have received a lot of positive attention, recently it came to light that the dance studio Deepika is seen entering during the first few seconds of the ad is a complete copy of the dance studio seen in Sooni Taraporevala's Yeh Ballet, designed by production designer Shailaja Sharma. Sooni Taraporevala took to her Instagram feed to share the developments along with images of scenes from the Levi's ad and from her film, writing, "A couple of days ago @cindy_jourdain brought this @levis_in ad to my attention. I was shocked to see our Yeh Ballet dance studio set in this ad, because it was conceptualized and created out of a derelict space by Shailaja Sharma @shalzoid (our PD) from scratch and dismantled after our shoot. No such dance studio exists in Mumbai which is why we built it. Basically @nadiaeye (the director of this ad) saw Yeh Ballet and decided to plagiarize our set down to the very last detail (swipe for screenshot). (sic)"


Sooni went on to add that this would never happen in the West, "Would Levi’s and the director ever think of doing that in the west without permission / acknowledgment, and passing it off as their own creative work? This is not homage this is intellectual theft! It’s SO unfair to our wonderful production designer @shalzoid to have her work ripped off like that. (sic)"


She also shared screenshots of Rupin Suchak's, who designed the set for Levi's advertisement, response where he acknowledged that the similarities between the sets seen in both the ad and Yeh Ballet were intentional, he wrote, "That's what our director wanted so we had to recreate that."

Sooni signed off her post by sharing that copycat culture in India needs to be cancelled, writing, "Copycat culture in India needs to be called out and cancelled. You would think a foreign production company and director would know better. Are you so creatively bankrupt? What were you thinking? @levis_in @nadiaeye @offroadfilms rupinsuchak @newland.tv." The director also clarified that the plagiarism had nothing to do with Deepika Padukone or anyone else from the cast of the ad.

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