This week’s copyright, media, and entertainment law updates are as below:
Kerala District Court Issues Injunction Order Against ‘Varaha Roopam’
The Palakkad District Court in Kerala, issuing an injunction order in the copyright infringement suit against the song ‘Varaha Roopam’ of the superhit Kannada film ‘Kantara’, restrained the producer- Hombale Films, the director- Rishabh Shetty, the distributor in Kerala- Prithviraj Productions Pvt. Ltd., and streaming platforms from exhibiting, streaming, distributing or communicating to the public the film Kantara with the synchronised song ‘Varaha Roopam’ until further orders. The suit was filed by Mathrubhumi Printing and Publishing Company Ltd., the owners of the rights to the song ‘Navarasam’, which allegedly is being plagiarized in the movie. This suit is the second suit, following the Kozhikode District Court suit, filed for protection of moral rights against unathorised use of copyrighted material, by Thaikkudam Bridge, a Kerala-based music band, where the court, as well, the granted an ad-interim injunction.
Song From Disney Movie Frozen II Allegedly Infringes 1999 Hit Song ‘That Girl’
Daniel E. Grigson, suing Disney for copyright infringement, alleges that a song from 2019 Disney Film Frozen II infringes the copyright he had in his own song from 1999, ‘That Girl’. The song ‘Some Things Never Change’ from the famous Disney Movie has been alleged to have strong similarities with the plaintiff’s song, which he claims can only be explained by ‘copying’. Grigson has requested a declaration from the Court that ‘Some Things Never Change’ was a rip-off of ‘That Girl, and that the Lopezes (couple that allegedly remade the song) and Disney have infringed his copyright in the original song. He also demanded damages for the alleged copyright infringement.
Celebrities with ‘lapsed morals’ in China, blacklisted
China takes steps to bar all celebrities from promoting a variety of goods and has banned anybody with “lapsed morality” from supporting anything. It is the most recent regulatory action in a campaign to regulate the entertainment sector, where celebrities have essentially been banned due to scandals and interference with internet fanbase. Celebrities must thoroughly comprehend and utilize the products they advertise, as per the new rules. The president of China’s advertising association, Zhang Guohua stated that, “This does not mean that celebrity endorsements will be limited, but everyone will be more cautious, and the artists will be more responsible and self-disciplined. As long as the law is complied with, celebrity endorsements will still be carried out normally within the scope of compliance and legality, so the impact is positive.”
Bombay High Court Directs Registrar of Copyright to Issue Public Notice for Translation of Mira Behn’s Autobiography
The Bombay High Court, in its recent decision, directed an issue of public notice in a petition filed by Anil Kharkhani. The petition was to obtain a license to translate and publish the autobiography of Madeleine Slade, also known as Mira Behn. The petitioner submitted that they satisfied all the requirements for obtaining the required license under S.32 of the Copyrights Act. The notice is to be published by the Registrar for Copyrights, with a time duration of 120 days, during which anyone claiming copyright in the original work can come forward, with evidence.
Authored by Ipshita Bhattacharyya (Associate, BananaIP Counsels), Tanmaya Purohit (Intern, BananaIP Counsels), and Rohan Cherian Koshy (Intern, BananaIP Counsels)
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