Bombay HC restrains release of a movie until deletion of scenes portraying picture of actress without permission

Bombay High Court LAW INSIDER IN

Umamageshwari Maruthapan

The Bombay High Court has proscribed the OTT release of Telugu Movie ‘V’ on Amazon Prime until striking out a scene in which Actor Sakshi Malik’s portfolio picture was used without permission. The Court also prohibited the telecast of the movie in any regional language until the deletion of the scene.

The Mumbai-based actor had registered a complaint against the filmmakers for using her picture that she had posted on her social media accounts without her permission. The filmmakers had used her picture as portrait of a female sex worker because of which a case of defamation was attracted against the crew. The actress had sought a permanent injunction.

The Single-Judge Bench of Justice G.S. Patel, however, decided to pass an interim order preventing the Venkateswara Creations Pvt. Ltd. from releasing the movie unless it deletes the particular scene and directed Amazon Prime to discontinue the online screening of the movie within 24 hours. The movie had hit the OTT platform.

“It seems to me self-evident that it is not possible to use the image of any person for a commercial purpose without express written consent. If images are to be used without such express consent, they must be covered by some sort of legally enforceable and tenable licensing regime, whether with or without royalty. Simply using another’s image, and most especially a private image, without consent is prima facie impermissible, unlawful, and entirely illegal. In a given case, it may also be defamatory, depending on the type of use,” the Bench observed.

The matter has been listed for the next hearing.

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