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Naik Paranjpe wins release of Knock Out, despite Phone Booth plagiarism claims

Knock-out movie
Knock-out movie
Naik Paranjpe & Co has yesterday secured the scheduled release of Sanjay Dutt-starring Hindi film Knock Out for its Indian producer clients by getting a stay on the movie vacated after initial allegations of copyright violation by Twentieth Century Fox were heard in the Bombay High Court on Monday.

The Hollywood production house had earlier been granted injunction by the high court on the plea of infringement of copyrighted literary work in its 2003 English film Phone Booth, which they said was copied.

The matter was argued for ad-interim relief on 13 October before the bench comprising of the Chief Justice Mohit Shah and justice Dhananjay Chandrachud after a special screening of the contentious movie was organised yesterday.

Naik Paranjpe managing partner instructed senior counsel Iqbal Chagla for AAP Entertainment and senior advocate Venkatesh Dhond appeared for the other producer Sohail Maklai while Twentieth Century Fox was led by law firm Neolegal Associates along with senior counsels Virendra Tulzapurkar and Firoz Palkhivala.

The argument advanced in favour of the movie ‘Knock Out’ was that the script was new and original work not a reproduction of the Hollywood flick.

“Mr. Chagla also submitted that Fox has filed on the basis of speculative reports which cannot be relied upon. Mr. Chagla submitted that the suit is bad on the ground of delay and latches. Mr. Chagla also submitted that Fox is claiming copyright in idea, which is not copyrightable,” said a Naik Paranjpe in a statement.

The stay has been vacated on the deposit Rs.1.5 crores in court with instructions to render accounts of exploitation film proceeds in the court by the producers.

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