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A production company claiming to be a co-producer of ‘Animal movie’ moves the Delhi High Court, seeking a stay of the Netflix release.

A production company claiming to be a co-producer of ‘Animal movie’ moves the Delhi High Court, seeking a stay of the Netflix release.

A new legal controversy has erupted around the upcoming Bollywood film ‘Animal’, as production company Cine 1 Studios Private Limited has moved the Delhi High Court seeking a stay on the movie’s Netflix release. Cine 1 claims to be a co-producer of the thriller and has accused the lead producer T-Series of not paying its share of the intellectual property rights.

The dispute centers on an Acquisition Agreement signed between Cine 1 and T-Series in 2019, which Cine 1 claims granted it co-ownership of ‘Animal’. With the star-studded Animal Movie set to premiere on Netflix soon, Cine 1 has approached the Delhi High Court alleging breaches of contract and seeking to halt the release.

Cine 1 Claims 35% Ownership of Animal IP Rights

In its lawsuit, Cine 1 Studios states that the 2019 agreement with T-Series granted it 35% intellectual property rights in the Animal Movie. This would entitle Cine 1 to a share of revenues from box office, streaming and satellite rights.

However, Cine 1 alleges that T-Series has not paid it any share of the proceeds, breaching their contract. It also claims T-Series did not keep it informed about the Netflix release plans for Animal movie. Based on the alleged breaches, Cine 1 wants the court to block the Netflix premiere of Animal until its rights are honored.

T-Series has contested Cine 1’s claims, stating it made no investment in Animal movie and that subsequent amendments nullified the 35% IP rights provision cited by Cine 1. The court has asked Cine 1 to respond to T-Series’ claims about superseding amendments before the next hearing.

Animal movie Boasts Star Cast Including Ranbir Kapoor

One of Bollywood’s most anticipated movies this year, Animal boasts an ensemble cast led by superstar Ranbir Kapoor. He is joined by Anil Kapoor, Bobby Deol, Rashmika Mandanna and Tripti Dimri in key roles.

With such big stars attached, the thriller has generated plenty of buzz leading up to its release. That release is now under a legal cloud due to the Delhi High Court case filed by Cine 1 Studios.

As the dispute plays out in court, fans are eager to finally see the finished Animal Movie. But Cine 1 is determined to halt the Netflix premiere unless T-Series addresses its co-producer claims.

Previous T-Series Disputes Over Film IP Rights

This is not the first time T-Series has faced a court battle over intellectual property rights for its movies. The production giant was involved in a similar Delhi High Court case in 2020 over ownership of the Taapsee Pannu film ‘Thappad’.

Like Cine 1, co-producer Anubhav Sinha had accused T-Series of not sharing revenues owed from ‘Thappad’. The dispute was eventually resolved outside of court. But it highlighted occasional conflicts around T-Series’ film financing model involving third-party producers.

The new fight over Animal movie IP rights has brought another such dispute over T-Series projects into the public eye. Cine 1 Studios clearly feels it has a valid claim as co-producer, which it aims to establish in the Delhi High Court.

Court Battle Threatens to Delay Netflix Release Plans

The brewing court fight between Cine 1 and T-Series poses a threat to the planned Netflix release of Animal in the coming months. If Cine 1 succeeds in getting an injunction, it could indefinitely delay the digital premiere.

That would be a major blow to producer T-Series which likely has big revenue expectations from the Netflix deal for such a high-profile title. The OTT release is key to maximizing Animal’s profitability after theatres.

But with Cine 1’s lawsuit alleging it was cut out of the proceeds, the Netflix debut seems precarious. The Delhi High Court’s upcoming rulings on Cine 1’s injunction pleas could determine Animal’s release fate.

Parties Look to Resolve Dispute Amicably Out of Court

While Cine 1 has gone on the legal offensive so far, there remains possibility the two sides can reach an amicable settlement out of court. A delay in Animal’s release would hurt all parties, so there are incentives to compromise.

If Cine 1 is genuine in possessing co-producer rights, T-Series also wouldn’t want the expense and reputational damage of fighting out a court battle. The company might choose to just reach a new agreement with Cine 1 providing it an IP share.

But with Cine 1 alleging it has so far received zero revenues, it may only accept a substantial settlement. For now the fight goes on, as the Animal Movie remains stuck in limbo awaiting the court’s decisions.

The high profile Delhi High Court case has sparked an intrigue-filled saga even before Animal’s release. While contractual movie disputes happen frequently in Bollywood, they rarely grab public attention like this. All eyes are on whether an injunction temporarily cages Animal, or a compromise lets the thriller finally reach its Netflix debut.

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