Thursday, January 7, 2010

Chetan Bhagat Vs 3 idiots team: The controversy

The controversy involving the makers of 3 idiots and the author of the book five point someone Chetan Bhagat has been going round for quite a while. Before I take a stand on the issue, it is better to have a look at what has transpired. So, here goes the story.

3 idiots is one of the biggest hits of the year and is touted to become one of the biggest hits of all time. It is apparently loosely based Chetan Bhagat’s five point someone. According to the director and makers of the movie, only 5% of the movie is based on the novel and the rest has been penned by the writers of the movie. HoIver, those who have seen the movie including me feel a lot has been taken from the novel and it is definitely higher than 5%.

If one looks at the business side of the whole episode, the makers of the movie claim to have bought the copyrights of the novel before making the movie. But what Chetan Bhagat’s complaint is not about the percentage of inspiring from the book. He is claiming that he hasn’t been given proper credits for the story of the movie. The makers hoIver claim that as per the agreement he was given the payment and also the bonus promised if the movie turns out to be hit.

As per the copyright laws, one can use the product he or she has brought the copyrights for, but there is no clause about giving credit to the author. It is purely based on one’s ethics about giving credit for the original work. Hence, I feel the makers of the movie should have given more credit to CB for the story department. Having said this, CB took more than 3 or 4 days after the premiere show to vent out his anger and that too he claims was started only when he started getting fan mails to his inbox.

I feel it is irresponsible on the part of CB to not have raised this before , during the filming of the movie and discussing about sharing credits during the agreement phase itself. Also, if I look at the fact that CB is a MBA from the country’s top engineering college, it is disheartening that he himself has not taken the copyright laws seriously and not ensure proper justice for himself. This tends to show the way Indian look at the copyright laws. Overall, I feel 3 idiots team have done injustice to CB, but CB himself could have avoided that. It is high time , the media and the film industry become more professional and take copyright laws and its agreements seriously like Hollywood does.

The original post on moneymint: link


  1. @Natraj:
    IMHO, this is all a drama to market both the movie and the book. I read in the newspaper that the FPS sale has skyrocketed after the controversy. CB is an MBA guy and he will know all kind of strategies. It is probably, one of his strategies to earn more money.

  2. Whatever said, I agree with you. due credit was supposed to be given. but it depends on the ethics of the person. The same kind of scenario was there with slumdog millionaire, Danny Boyle also adapted the story from Q & A but changed the story as per his convenience. But he gave due credit to Vikas Swaroop. He even thanked him during the Oscar's for the book. He said that without the book there would not have been any movie. He showed modesty and dignity. Aamir Khan or Rajkumar Hirani would not have lost anything if they would hv given CB due credit but they didn't.

  3. Whiff of life in my view about all that we face and to be faced. Commentary on movies etc. is rather a different of that ur blog topic. Otherwise OK,good efforts.

  4. nice article. I would love to follow you on twitter.


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