Looks like the legal battle over The Legend of Maula Jatt has finally come to an end.
Muttaqi Sarwar, the son of Muhammad Sarwar Bhatti, who produced the hit 1979 film starring Sultan Rahi and Mustafa Qureshi has been claiming for a while now that the upcoming Maula Jatt flick directed by Bilal Lashari and produced by Ammara Hikmet is being marketed in violation of the original classic's copyrights.
However, the two parties have now finally decided to resolve their dispute amicably after fighting about it for years in court in Lahore and Karachi.
In a copy of the settlement provided to Images, the agreement states that Mr. Sarwar Bhatti is the exclusive copyright and trademark owner of the cinematographic work Maula Jatt (1979) who has out of the goodness of his heart and in consideration of the revival of Pakistani cinema, allowed the filmmakers behind the new movie to use the content from his original work and will subsequently withdraw all other court petitions related to its release.
The agreement also declared that this concurrence is only confined to the making, releasing, promoting and distribution of The Legend of Maula Jatt and not any future movies that may violate rights of the old movie retained by Bahoo Films. It also states that Bahoo Films will record a statement before the Intellectual Property Tribunal, Lahore, reiterating that the matter has been resolved and that Ammara Hikmet's Encylomedia PR is permitted to use the content of Maula Jatt for this upcoming movie.
Also read: What is the future of Maula Jutt?
The movie will tentatively hit cinemas on Eid-ul-Fitr 2020; the flick, starring Mahira Khan, Humaima Malick, Fawad Khan and Hamza Ali Abbasi, (Ali Azmat will also make a cameo!) will also become the first film from Pakistan which will release in China the same day as its domestic release.
The cast also includes Gohar Rasheed, Faris Shafi, Shafqat Cheema, Nayyer Ejaz and Saima Baloch, among others; it is said to be Pakistan's most expensive production to date and it sure looks it too:
In 2017, Mr Sarwar filed a suit before the Intellectual Property Organisation of Pakistan (IPO-Pakistan) tribunal seeking an injunctive order against the exhibition of The Legend of Maula Jatt; in 2019, he also went on to submit multiple applications for a stay order in Lahore High Court to prohibit the producer and director of the new movie from using the name (or similar title), character and dialogues that violate intellectual property law.