The controversy that marred Varun Dhawan-Banita Sandhu’s October finally found a resolution of sorts with the Screenwriters Association (SWA) ruling out charges of plagiarism and infringement of copyright. It was stated that the director Shoojit Sircar should have given credit to Sunny Pawar (whose life allegedly made for the source material) on humanitarian grounds.
Hemal Trivedi, a filmmaker and editor, had alleged on social media that the Shoojit Sircar film was “stolen” from a Marathi film Aarti - The Unknown Love Story.
Trivedi took to Facebook to say that “Sircar has not just picked up the plot and the storyline, but has also blatantly copied the look and the moments from the original film”, and the film’s director Sarika Mene is now in depression and has become suicidal.
In 2006, Mr. Pawar, Mene’s brother came into the spotlight for dedicating four years of his life to his girlfriend Aarti who was in a comatose state after a car accident. Mene and her brother, who are convinced that the film is based on the latter’s life alleged that he was not given credit in the film or the promotions. SWA maintained that the makers are not under any legal obligation to seek permission or acknowledge Sunny Pawar.
“As a matter of principle and on purely ethical and humanitarian grounds, if [October] has been inspired by the source material, then they should have sought permission from the families involved in the said incident or at the very least, acknowledged the said incident as a source of inspiration.”SWA
- 01/02A copy of the decision of the dispute settlement committee.(Photo Courtesy: By special arrangement)
- 02/02A copy of the decision of the dispute settlement committee.(Photo Courtesy: By special arrangement)
October revolves around Dan (Varun Dhawan), a young hotel management trainee, who grows up when a sudden tragedy involving his batch mate Shiuli (Banita Sandhu) shakes him up completely.
Aarti - The Unknown Love Story is based on the true story of Sunny Pawar and Aarti Makawana, a couple who faced tragedy when an accident left Aarti immobile and with memory loss. Sunny took care of Aarti for four years till she passed away from a sudden attack of pneumonia in 2010.
Here’s the trailer of Aarti - The Unknown Love Story:
And here’s the trailer of October.
While both the films might be dealing with a man devoting his life for the care of a partner, from what’s apparent from the trailers of the two films, similarities seemed but few.
Shoojit Sircar had confirmed that they received a letter from the makers of Aarti.
“We will surely respond to the letter officially. And post which we will let you know our official statement...We understand that there are some allegations of copyright infringement against our film ‘October’. We are creative people and have full faith in our work and our team, which has given extraordinary films like Piku, Pink etc. We have not heard of the film Aarti nor do we have full details of the matter as yet. We are sensitive towards feelings of filmmakers. We will look into this and deal with it appropriately.”Shoojit Sircar told The Hindu.
With inputs from The Hindu.
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