Look Who’s Talking: The Copycat, Indeed

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Priyadarshan

It was only the other day, that the Tamil Nadu police had arrested a student from Kerala, for posting the teaser of the ready-to-release Tamil film Puli, starring superstar Vijay. Interestingly, the sound mixing student was paraded before the news and television cameras by police officials, in tow with, veteran Malayalam director, Priyadarshan.A photograph of the arrested student was published by the media, who was accompanied by Priyadarshan and the police.The director claims it was a clue provided by him that led to the arrest.

The arrested student has been identified as Mithun, from Thiruvananthapuram. The charge against Mithun was that he posted the teaser on YouTube, before it was released officially. The film makers had earlier decided to release the teaser, last Monday, being Vijay’s 40th birthday. But heeding to his fans’ request, it was released on Sunday. Mithun, however, posted the trailer before the intended date of release.

Puli is an action fantasy film directed by Chimpu Devan, with Sruthi Haasan and Hansika Motvani as the lead actresses. Another highlight of the film is, yesteryear South Indian diva Sridevi’s comeback in Tamil films, after a long gap.

Meanwhile, many social media campaigners came out in support of Mithun and came down heavily on Priyadarshan, for posing before the media, as if he was an investigating officer, who had managed to catch a fugitive.

Mithun had shot the trailer on his mobile and posted it on You Tube, as he was a hardcore fan of Vijay. He had merely recorded the trailer through his mobile phone, and had not ‘copied’ the film. At most, he deserved a stern warning, rather than a police hunt accompanied by Priyadarshan. He was also paraded before the media for his alleged crime, as if he were a hardcore criminal, who had long remained elusive to the police.

Moreover, it seems rather hypocritical of Priyadarshan to accuse the student of “copying”, as he, himself, is quite well known for plagiarising. Priyadarshan began his career by copying foreign classics, and turning  then into Malayalam films. He then made a mark in the Hindi film industry by simply copying old Malayalam blockbusters into Hindi film. “If copying is a crime, Priyadarshan deserves capital punishment,’’ observed social media activist, Rahul Humble Sanal.

“In copying a film, nobody can beat Priyadarshan. He copied films from English, French, Italian and even from Hindi. Now copying Malayalam films to Hindi. What would happen if the original directors acted against him,’’ asks Sathyadas, another activist.

They all demand a fair treatment for ‘copying’ fans from prominent directors like Priyadarshan, who have, over the years, excelled in the art.

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