The controversy over Bob and Kriti has become more dramatic than any film with all kinds of twists and turns taking place every single day. It all started on June 22nd when Shirish Kunder directorial short film titled ‘Kriti’ was released on YouTube which was later claimed to be a copy of his short film ‘BOB’ by Aneel Neupane. The controversy was not only covered by the media houses of Nepal and India but various international online platforms as well. After receiving a copyright infringement complaint from the Kathmandu based filmmaker, YouTube took down ‘Kriti’. And just few days later, even ‘Bob’ was pulled down from both YouTube and Vimeo as the Kriti producers reported the video. It’s not limited to this only, a lot of things have been said on social media from the two sides, with Shirish ending up banning everyone talking against him including Aneel on Twitter. Read about the entire controversy HERE.
The team of Kriti that included director Shirish Kunder, actor Manoj Bajpayee, the producer and their lawyer; called a press conference on Friday in Mumbai regarding the plagiarism row. During the 40-minute conference, a lot of things were said by the team. And sadly, it was more of a shaming and ridiculing the opponent. Here are some of the highlight statements given by the Kriti team.
Lawyer: “Aisi tarah ki badmashiyan hoti rehti hai internet pe.” [Such mischievous acts often take place on the internet.]
Shirish: “He is not some renowned filmmaker, not somebody who is very well known, not somebody from this field but just an internet savvy.”
Manoj: “I was feeling bad for Shirish as he was being victimized by some utterly ambitious crook. Because this guy he is a … unka aap bio jaake padhiye, woh marriage video banate hai, usne ek gareeb hone ka card khela, hamare desh ke log bhi unki taraf ho gaye, jo media hamko support karta hai usme se bhi bahut sare log uske paas ho gaye.”
[You read his bio. He makes wedding videos. He just played a ‘poor guy’ card and even the people of our country went to his side. Even the media which used to support us, most of them took his side.]
Shirish: “Humne February mein shoot kiya tha aur June me release. Iss dauran bich mein koi shadi ka video banane wala handycam le ke kuch aisa kuch ghanto me shoot karke is Vimeo ki jo ek flaw hai system me usme purane date daalke hum pe iljaam lagata hai.”
[We had shot the film in February and released it in June. In the meantime, somebody who makes wedding videos shows up with his handycam and shoots a video in a couple of hours and takes advantage of the flaw in Vimeo that allows one to change the upload date and then blames us for plagiarism.]
Shirish: “Hamein response bahut acche mil rahe hai, sirf teen log humpe attack kar rahe hai. Main batata hu woh teen log kaun hai – ek hai bahut saare Nepal ke citizens. Main samjhata hu unka logic ke deshbhakti hai ke hamare aadmi ke sath aisa hua. Ab un becharo ko kya pata ke yeh fraud ne kya kiya hai, they have been misguided. woh deshbhakti me kar rahe hai and I understand why they do it. Second social media ke jo trolls hai, unka bhi mujhe samajh me aata hai kyun ki unka to kaam hi troll karna hai. Teesra mujhe aaj tak samajh me nahi aaya hai, iska jawab mujhe aap hi de do – media, khas karke hamari. Yeh main samajhta hu ke agar koi kamyaab aadmi ho to usko niche girao, main to kamyaab bhi nahi hu yaar. mujhe aur kitna niche giraoge.”
[We have been receiving very good responses but there are only three kinds of people who have been attacking us. I will tell you who they are. Firstly, there are a lot of Nepalese citizens and I do understand their logic as they are driven by the patriotism that someone from our country is facing the issue. But they don’t know what this fraud has done, so they are misguided. Secondly, the trolls on social media. I understand their point of view as well as their work is just to troll others. And then there’s the third kind of people and I have not yet been able to understand why, and they are media, and mostly our media. I can understand that if there’s a successful person, one wants to drag him down. But I am not even successful, why would you do this to me?
Manoj: “Hum completely victimized huye hai iss chij me. Hamara victim koi nahi hai. Ek aadmi jisko koi kaam nahi tha, uthkar ke usne ek iljaam laga diya aur sabne haatho haath le liya.”
[We have been victimized. There’s no one who is our victim. A person who had no work just came and blamed us and everybody bought what he said.]
Manoj: “Unko aap logo ke paper pe channel pe aana tha, uska kaam ho gaya. Aap log uska naam jante hai ab isse jyada kya chahiye.”
[He just had to get featured on your channel and newspapers and now his work is over. All of you know his name now, what else does he need.]
A Quick Summary
In short, Aneel Neupane was called a crook, fraud, attention seeker and what not. Calling a press conference to shame a person just didn’t look very professional to us. The team kept on saying that he is someone who makes wedding videos. Okay, what is that even supposed to mean? May be he is interested in doing such videos as well or may be and most probably, as he is an independent film-maker and photographer, he does need to earn something and such commercial projects do bring some cash, so why not? Plus, the wedding video they’ve been talking about is much more interesting than ‘Joker’. Period. Watch it HERE.
The one thing ‘Kriti’ team didn’t deny was the fact that the two films are similar. Instead, they kept on trying to prove that it was Bob which was a copy. They even blamed the system of Vimeo that anyone can just play with it and change the upload date of the video. But seriously, is that really possible? Well, to find out the truth, we emailed Vimeo to ask the same and this is the reply we received.
The email from a support staff from Vimeo, Jacob G., clearly states that it’s not possible to change the upload date of a video. If someone doubts that the above email is a fake, please message us and we’ll be very happy to forward you the original thread of the email.
Okay, let’s just assume that Vimeo didn’t want to admit that they have a flaw in their system so they just lied to us. But there are still other things which prove that Bob was shot and completed way before Kriti.
See all of these drafts HERE.
May be these drafts are all fake as well and they created them after the controversy. But what about this photo album titled ‘B.O.B’ on their Facebook page which contains the photographs from the shoot and were posted way back in August 2015. Yes, August 2015! Check out these photos HERE.
Fine. Let’s just say that everything we have said so far is a lie and every material attached in this article is fake. Let’s not even talk about Vimeo and the video that was uploaded last year. But in the conference; ‘Kriti’ team clearly stated that on YouTube, it’s not possible to change the upload date of the video. So, how can a film be a copy which was released at least one month before the other film they are accusing it to be copied from? Just how? This whole situation reminds us of a Hindi saying, “Chor ulta kotwaal ko daante. [The pot calling the kettle black.]
Oops! We didn’t talk about this poster yet. When asked about the copied concept of the ‘Kriti’ poster, Shirish just had to say this, “You can’t call it copied. It’s just a form of art.” Wow! We don’t even want to comment anything on it.
Dear Manoj Bajpayee, you used to be one of our favorite actors!
Watch the full video of the press conference here.