Vishal Bharadwaj’s upcoming film ‘Rangoon’ is just a week away from its release. The movie has been creating quite a buzz and has been making news for all the right reasons. It sees Kangana Ranaut, Shahid Kapoor and Saif Ali Khan in lead roles and is a period drama set in the time of World War II. In the film, Kangana is seen playing the role of Miss Julia, a stunt woman who is eyed by both the lead actors. But now apparently, Kangana has led the film in a legal trouble.
Film production company Wadia Movietone Pvt. Ltd. has reportedly filed a commercial suit against Vishal Bhardwaj and others in the Mumbai High Court on grounds of copyright infringement. According to a report in Mid-Day, Roy Wadia on behalf of Wadia Movietone Pvt. Ltd. has claimed that Miss Julia, the character of Kangana Ranaut – a strong stuntwoman – is based on real-life Australian stunt actor Mary Evans, popularly known in India and around the world as Fearless Nadia. Reportedly, Wadia’s firm hold rights to all scripts, publicity material and posters for the Fearless Nadia films it has produced. The Wadias’ suit alleges that the makers of Rangoon have infringed on the copyrighted Fearless Nadia’s characters, costumes, persona and even her signature “Bloody Hell!” phrase. In fact, Bloody Hell wass the first single from Rangoon that was released.
Apparently, way back in 2006, Ronnie Screwvala of UTV was approached by Roy Wadia to make a film on Nadia. Things did not work out but soon news emerged that Vishal Bhardwaj was making a similar film for UTV. In 2008, Wadia signed an agreement with a German firm that it could use all of Wadias’ copyrighted material on Fearless Nadia to make a film on her. (ALSO READ: WHAT? Rangoon star Shahid Kapoor fell for an internet hoax?)
Seven years later, Wadia got news that a film called Rangoon was being made and that it was supposedly based around Nadia’s life. Wadia told the film’s makers that the rights to Fearless Nadia’s character and story were with a German firm and if Vishal and co. still went ahead with Rangoon, they could land in legal trouble. Disney UTV (then, headed by Siddharth Roy Kapur) assured Wadia and the German firm that the film wouldn’t be made.