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Dayal Padmanabhan alleges copyright infringement in Malayalam remake of his film Aa Karaala Ratri

The filmmaker claims that director Ajay Vasudev’s Kunchacko Boban film, which is currently in pre-production, is being made without due diligence in rights procurement.

Dayal Padmanabhan alleges copyright infringement in Malayalam remake of his film Aa Karaala Ratri
A still from Aa Karaala Ratri

Last Updated: 08.45 PM, Oct 06, 2021


Earlier today, Kannada filmmaker Dayal Padmanabhan sent a notice to Kochi-based Sree Gokulam Movies, which is, apparently, backing an Ajai Vasudev directorial starring Kunchacko Boban, Aparna Balamurali and Sreeja in pivotal roles, claiming copyright infringement. The film in question is apparently the Malayalam remake of the Kannada film Aa Karaala Ratri, the rights to which are with Dayal.


In his notice, Dayal states that his Kannada film was based on the play Aa Karaala Ratri by noted writer Mohan Habbu and that he has procured the world rights to make it as feature films in any language. Dayal wrote the story, screenplay and dialogues for the Kannada version, which he directed and produced as well. While the film was dubbed in Hindi, Dayal also made a Telugu version for Aha.

Thereafter, the filmmaker admits that he was in discussion to sell the Malayalam remake rights to Wallposter Entertainment, through Mr Ajeesh, one of the partners of the company, who defaulted on the agreed upon amount. Subsequently, the discussion was revived by Mr Nishad, Ajeesh’s partner, to handover the rights to Goodline Productions, who would be co-producing the Malayalam version in association with Sree Gokulam Movies. However, despite repeated reminders, Nishad and Ajeesh continued to default on the final settlement.

Dayal writes, “I am forced to conclude that Mr Nishad, who is the screenwriter of the Malayalam version to be produced by you, has misguided you regarding the copyrights of the film, and you have subsequently proceeded to the extent of commencing the shoot without due diligence of rights procurement.”

The filmmaker advices them to procure the rights within seven days with a set of new conditions, including revised cost for the rights, 10% share from the net profit of the Malayalam version and addition of Mohan Habbu’s name for concept and Dayal Padmanabhan’s name for story and original screenplay in the title credits, failing which he will initiate legal proceedings against them.

The notice has also been sent to the Karnataka and Kerala Film Chambers of Commerce, as well as the producers’ associations in both states, with attached copies of the original copyright agreement, as well as chat transcripts between Dayal and the parties involved in negotiating the remake rights for the Malayalam version.

The Kannada original had J Karthik, Anupama Gowda and Rangayana Raghu in pivotal roles. 

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