June 11, 2021 4:05:40 am
Delhi High Court on Thursday refused to stay the release of film ‘Nyay: The Justice’, which is based on the death of Bollywood actor Sushant Singh Rajput observing that “artistic freedom to create fictional works cannot be controlled.”
Justice Sanjeev Narula dismissed the plea filed by Rajput’s father, KK Singh, who sought a stay on several films slated to be made on the late actor’s life.
“The artistic freedom to create fictional works cannot be controlled, limited, or confined within set boundaries. An artist’s inspiration can come from any source, and the court cannot filter real-life events. This Court finds merit in the submission of the Defendants that details of the demise of SSR received widespread and protracted news coverage in all media, which are available in the public domain, and form a part of the public record,” the Delhi High Court said.
Some of the upcoming or proposed movie projects, based on Rajput’s life, mentioned in the plea, are – ‘Nyay: The Justice’, ‘Suicide or Murder: A star was lost’, ‘Shashank’ and an unnamed crowd-funded film.
According to the suit, filed through advocates Akshay Dev, Varun Singh, Abhijeet Pandey and Samruddhi Bendbhar, ‘Nyay’ is scheduled to be released in June, while shooting has commenced with regard to ‘Suicide or Murder: A star was lost’ and ‘Shashank’.
The suit has also contended that Rajput being a well-known celebrity, “any misuse of his name/ image/ caricature/ style of delivering dialogues also amounts to infringement of the personality right vested with the plaintiff besides amounting to acts of passing off”.
On this the high court said that the “foundational facts have to be established and proved and mere status of a celebrity is not enough” .
The high court also held that it “did not find any element to hold that the film would lead the public to believe that it is a true story or a biopic that has been authorised or endorsed by the Plaintiff.”
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