MediaFile

Bollywood to plagiarism: Bye bye?

August 26, 2009

Filmmakers in Bollywood, India’s movie industry, are notorious for borrowing liberally from foreign films far and wide, especially Hollywood.

Even when they don’t copy an entire film frame by frame, Bollywood directors often borrow from several films at once, melding story lines and adapting them to an Indian setting, complete with song and dance. They do this, of course, without buying the remaking rights. Despite a lot of original cinema coming out of Bollywood, plagiarism is rife.

Hollywood hasn’t cared until now, The Washington Post’s Emily Wax reports. Twentieth Century Fox recently settled a lawsuit with BR Films — a well-known banner — over its remake of the 1992 hit “My Cousin Vinny.” Fox accepted $200,000, paving the way for a release of the Hindi version, called “Banda Yeh Bindaas Hai” or “This Guy is Fearless”.

The Times of London has reported that a lawyer representing major American studios has recently sent warning letters to producers who he believes are copying Hollywood films. Among the titles are “Ghostbusters”, “Jerry Maguire”, “The Departed” and “The Curious Case of Benjamin Button”, the paper reports.

Will Fox’s action finally put a stop to the widespread plagiarism in Bollywood? More likely, Bollywood producers will just have to cough up the money to buy remaking rights, which is how it should be.

Keep an eye on:

  • Nokia plans to tackle Apple’s iPhone with a bet on Linux software. (Reuters)
  • Channel 4 will drop Big Brother as it focuses more on public service broadcasting. (Financial Times)
  • Alcatel-Lucent shares jump on rumors of Chinese bid. (Reuters)

Photo: www.moviegoods.com

Comments
6 comments so far | RSS Comments RSS

I think its good that they have to pay the original makers of the film. It probably won’t stop the Bollywood labels seeing as these amounts are probably trivial to the amount of money they stand to make.

Posted by fdaf | Report as abusive
 

When All Muslim Actors like Shah rukh khan,Aamir Khan,Salman Khan Saif Ali Khan and all other Muslim actors are going to perform HAJ pilgrimage? All of us hope that they are all praying daily five times prayer and all of us hope they will do their Haj pilgrimage by this year.

 

Lets stick to the topic under discussion. What actors do in their time is their personal life and lets discuss what this forum intended rather than our own personal topics.

Posted by Kusum | Report as abusive
 

Hollywood studios should not limit their copyright police work to Bollywood. They should also monitor the South Indian film industry. There’s a lot of copying going on there. They steal soundtracks and scenes, and sometimes an entire movie. Examples: ‘Memento’ into ‘Ghajini’ (Tamil and Hindi), ‘The Myth’ into a movie starring Telugu actor Chiranjeevi.

Posted by Creativist | Report as abusive
 

I think fox will put a stop to this.

 

Just as Bollywood looks to Hollywood for inspiration, Hollywood too often remakes European movies!

Posted by Salauddeen | Report as abusive
 

Post Your Comment

We welcome comments that advance the story through relevant opinion, anecdotes, links and data. If you see a comment that you believe is irrelevant or inappropriate, you can flag it to our editors by using the report abuse links. Views expressed in the comments do not represent those of Reuters. For more information on our comment policy, see http://blogs.reuters.com/fulldisclosure/2010/09/27/toward-a-more-thoughtful-conversation-on-stories/