Aishwarya Rai Bachchan's upcoming flick Fanney Khan caught the curiosity of many after the release of its poster last Sunday, on June 17. Shahid Kapoor's Meter Gul Batti Chalu, slated for release at the beginning of August too has moviegoers in waiting. But looks like things are not going as well as expected since the two upcoming movies are caught in a legal battle between filmmakers over production rights.
According to a report by Mumbai Mirror, Bollywood producer Vashu Bhagnani has issued a public notice claiming his rights over Fanney Khan.
The Aishwarya Rai Bachchan-starrer is directed by Atul Manjrekar and jointly produced by KriArj Entertainment with Rakeysh Omprakash Mehra and T-series. Earlier reports had suggested that after the controversial exit of Prernaa Arora from KriArj production house, Bhushan Kumar had taken over as a producer for Fanney Khan with Rakeysh Omprakash Mehra, as well as the social drama, Batti Gul Meter Chalu, directed by Shree Narayan Singh.
But according to the notice, producer Vashu Bhagnani has the theatrical rights of exhibition, distribution and exploitation of commercial and non-commercial for all territories of both films.
Furthermore, based on the public notice, Bhagnani also has the production rights to Fanney Khan that ensures the movie would not be released without his prior permission, approval and consent in writing.
Here's what Vashu Bhagnani had to say while speaking to Mumbai Mirror:
Yes, I have sent legal notices to Bhushan, Prernaa, and Rakeysh on Monday claiming the rights to these films. For Fanney Khan, I have the all-India distribution rights and am entitled to producer's credit, while in Baati Gul Meter Chalu I have the producer title and a commitment of the all-India distribution of the film. I've documents supporting my claims, except for the distribution agreement of Batti Gul Meter Chalu which Prernaa had promised me would be made once the film goes on the floors but that didn't happen."
"They released the Fanney Khan poster without my consent, but nobody can release the film as the rights are with me," he states.
Talking about the investments, Bhagnani added, "Prernaa was the producer of these films earlier but since she didn't have that much money to invest, she borrowed from other filmmakers, including Bhushan and me."
The notice reads:
"Notice is given to the Public at large and person associated with the Film Trade that our clients (1) Pooja Entertainment and Films Limited (2) Pooja Film Company through Vashu Bhagnani have entered into Agreements with KriArj Entertainment Private Limited whereby they have acquired rights for the following Films: A) Batti Gul Meter Chalu starring Shahid Kapoor, Shraddha Kapoor, Yami Gautam directed by Shree Narayan Singh (Previously known as 'Roshini' vide Agreement dated 16.10.2017). B) Fanney Khan starring Anil Kapoor, Aishwarya Rai Bachchan, and Rajkummar Rao, directed by Shree Atul Manjrekar (Agreement dated 16.12.2017). Our clients are therefore entitled to exploit the rights in the films listed herein, granted to our clients free from encumbrance, or claim inertial credit in the film."