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3D Sholay in a legal battle

News Helpline | November, 16 2012

This is as riveting a drama as Bollywood's cult classic Sholay. But the scene of action is a courtroom, not Ramgarh. And the protagonists are not Gabbar, Veeru and Jai, but family members of the man who produced Hindi cinema's first - and to date the best - 'curry eastern'. As earlier reported the 1975 action adventure film Sholay, produced by G. P. Sippy and directed by his son Ramesh Sippy will be released in a 3D version. G. P. Sippy’s grandson Sasha who has created the 3D version along with Jayantilal Gada has been dragged into a legal battle by Ramesh Sippy.

Director Ramesh Sippy claims that he has never relinquished the rights of Sholay whereas Sasha says that Ramesh doesn’t hold any rights on the film. When probed into the matter Sasha said, “We had a hearing today but Ramesh Sippy did not get an injunction on the film. The case has been deferred to a later date. Three months before the release of Sholay in 1975, Ramesh Sippy resigned as a partner of Sippy Films. After that he was involved only as a film director and not at the corporate level.

According to Sasha, Ramesh had signed an agreement in 1989 with G.P. Sippy that gave him certain share in the family’s movie business. By 1997 the company could no longer pay the bills of Ramesh due to declining business. To compensate Ramesh, he was given the rights to air Buniyaad on national television by Sasha’s father Vijay Sippy. After Vijay passed away the movie business was taken over by Sasha, G.P. Sippy’s daughter’s Sunita’s son Shaan and Shasha’s one more cousin Shezad. The nephews consider Ramesh as odd one out. When contacted, Ramesh Sippy refused to comment.

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