The information of the leaks was found out and informed timely to the movie producer by Choreographer Remo D’Souza. The Akshay Kumar-starrer movie ‘Toilet: Ek Prem Katha’ has got leaked on the internet. Choreographer Remo D’Souza met a person who had the movie on his pen-drive, as soon as he knew about it, he checked the pen-drive and after confirmation, he immediately contacted Akshay Kumar and the producer of the movie and informed them about the matter. As of now, legal action is already undergoing against the source of piracy and the leaks apparently have been blocked by the Crime Branch.
If the information about the leaks wouldn’t have got known to someone inside the industry like Remo D’souza, the leaks could have got widespread and might have severely affected the collections of the movie ‘Toilet: Ek Prem Katha’ which was slated for a release on 11th August.
However, this isn’t the first incidence of a movie leak and subsequent piracy in Bollywood. There are a few movies which had a massive loss in their collections due to piracy, and there are also a few which were never even released in theaters owing to spread of leaks before the release date.
The Superstar Rajnikanth-starrer movie Kabali was leaked online on 19th July 2016, three days prior to the worldwide release date of 22nd July 2016. The movie was available online on the dark web, but there were some fake links to the movie which were circulated on some websites. The Makers of the film then approached the Madras High court regarding the issue to prevent any effort for making the leaks spread further. A day before the official release, a 2-minute sequence of the movie was also leaked online and was shared through social messaging applications like Whatsapp.
Great Grand Masti
The Adult Comedy movie Great Grand Masti starring Vivek Oberoi, Aftab Shivdasani, Riteish Deshmukh and Urvashi Rautela had got leaked on 5th July 2016, more than two weeks before its official release date of 22nd July 2016. The pirated copy of the movie was widely shared online and hosted on torrent sites such as Kickass and PirateBay. The source of the leaks apparently was from the copy of the movie sent to Central Board of Film Certification (CBFC) for review as the pirated copy had a watermark of CBFC on it. As a result of this leak, the release date was preponed to a week, on 15th July 2016.
The super-hit Salman Khan-starrer movie’s collections could have been drastically affected had the leaks of the movie not got blocked on time. Just like Kabali, the movie first got leaked on the day of the official release, 6th July 2016 on the Darknet. The source of the leak was yet again the review copy of the movie sent to the CBFC Chennai. However, according to Yash Raj Films, and private investigators, the sources of the leaked movie were blocked on time.
The crime-comedy film Udta Punjab starring Kareena Kapoor Khan, Alia Bhatt and Shahid Kapoor, released a month before Great Grand Masti was also a victim of piracy. On 15th June 2016, just two days before the official release of the movie, the movie was leaked online in some peer-to-peer sharing websites and on the torrent in two clips of 40 minutes. After filing a complaint with the Cyber-Crime Cell in Mumbai, the producers and the production house of the movie were able to pull down over 600 links of Udta Punjab from the internet. The source of the leak of this movie was almost the same as of Great Grand Masti, leaked from a copy of the movie which was sent to the Censor Board.
These are just a few of the many cases in which there could have could have been a huge loss to the makers of the movie if the sources of piracy were not blocked on time. One of the many reasons why the Indian Film Indian lags behind Hollywood in terms of revenue despite being the largest Film Industry in the World is because of the damage piracy does to the industry. Having leaked pirated movie available on the internet discourages the potential viewers to visit the theaters to watch the movie. Which in turn affects the revenue for the movie earned from Box-Office collections.
Moreover, film-making involves days and months of effort from everyone, the spot-boys to the producers and actors. Piracy indirectly takes the efforts all people involved in the making of a film into waste. While there are several measures taken until now to prevent the practice of piracy, there’s still a long way to go in order to completely curb the piracy of movies.