The film industry is known for being one big family. But after the copyright issue, in which famed lyricist Javed Akhtar
lobbied in parliament for the rights of writers and singers, a visible crack has appeared in this faade of camaraderie.
The Film Federation of India
the mother body of all film associations, has "advised members of the
film federation to not employ the services" of the iconic writer. The
decision was taken yesterday morning in Chennai by its newly elected
president, T.P. Agrawal.
When contacted Agrawal put it mildly,
saying, "Yes, it is true. We have advised members of the film federation
to ban Mr Javed Akhtar till the time that this entire copyrights issue
is sorted. Our whole point is that the producer is the one who takes the
If Javed Akhtar wants a percentage as royalty,
then he should also be liable to incur a percentage of the losses, if
any. If we agree to one such demand, then tomorrow the singer will come
up, then the music composer, and then the actor and so on.
will the producer do and how will he make films? The producer won't be
able to make any money. I just want to say that if you want royalty,
then don't take our money. Merely let's work as a partnership and also
share the losses, if any."
When we asked Agrawal what would
happen if someone went ahead and still worked with Akhtar, he said, "We
can't force anyone but it is an advice given to everyone. We will think
about it when the time comes."
Ashoke Pandit, senior executive
member of AMPTPP, Association of Motion Pictures & Television
Programme Producers, is accusing Javed Akhtar of a more personal agenda.
He said, "Why is Javed Akhtar saying this at the fag end of his career?
Why didn't he raise these issues when he was at his peak? Basically his
whole idea is to not allow any newcomers to mushroom in the industry.
Instead of being with the producer, you are damaging the producer. It's
a good thing that everyone has come together and taken a decision."
When contacted Mukesh Bhatt said, "I am not aware of this decision as I
have not spoken to either party. However, having said that, I think it
is more out of emotions than a decision. I think that the way in which
the government has handled the whole copyright issue which has created
the divide in the film industry.
As a Senior VP of the Guild my grouse is not against the composer or the lyricist; it is against the government."
Despite repeated calls and text messages to Javed Akhtar, at the time of going to print, he was still unavailable for comment.
Can someone please explain this issue to me in detail. I think we have a lot of students of law in this forum. How are things in india vis-a-vis other countries on music copyright ? Help, please