Director Aashiq Abu dismissed allegations of copyright claims against his upcoming film Virus. Filmmaker Uday Ananthan had filed a petition in court staking claim to the title and the story following which the court had issued a stay on the film’s release on Thursday.
According to Manorama, the director, while responding to the allegation from the shooting location in Calicut, said “My movie is inspired from real incidents. So how can it be termed as a copy of someone’s story?”
Virus is based on the infamous Nipah outbreak in the state. The Nipah virus killed at least 17 people in the state in May 2018, including Lini Puthussery, a 28-year-old nurse who contracted Nipah and died while treating the afflicted in a government hospital in Kozhikode.
The director said that he will take necessary action at the right time. He did not wish to enter controversies at this stage. The movie is originally scheduled to release on April 11.
Earlier, Uday Ananthan filed a complaint in the Ernakulam district court saying that the story and the title originally belonged to him. Uday Ananthan is best known for his films like Pranayakaalam and the Mammootty starrer White.
The director’s advocate said that Aashiq Abu was informed of Uday’s plans back when he announced Virus. He also said that a letter was sent to the Film Employees Federation of Kerala (FEFKA) and that the organisation had also informed the director about Uday’s plans. Documents regarding the same were also submitted.
The High Court stay will not only prevent the theatrical release of the film, but will also prohibit its screening at film festivals or its remake in other languages. Uday Ananthan’s advocate said that a letter has been sent to the crew members in this regard.
Virus has an ensemble cast — Revathy, Asif Ali, Rima Kallingal, Parvathy TK, Remya Nambissan, Tovino Thomas, Kalidas Jayaram, Soubin Shahir, Dileesh Pothan and Chemban Vinod Jose — and a formidable technical crew. The film, written by Muhsin Parari, Suhas and Sharfu, has cinematographer-filmmaker Rajeev Ravi handling the camera. Music composer Sushin Shyam is also a part of the project.
Image courtesy: TNIE