Earlier this week, we told you about how the Bhanot family wants to sue the filmmakers of Neerja for not holding up their promise of sharing ten percent of the film’s profit with them and the Neerja Bhanot Trust. Neerja’s brother didn’t divulge much but said the family wouldn’t stand for injustice and will take this up with the court.
Now, the film’s producer Atul Kasbekar has com forth to slam those statements. He took to Facebook to share that as per their agreement, the Bhanot family was offered a part of the profit but they declined to take it. You can read the full statement below.
At the outset, again, we’d like to say that we are immensely grateful that the Bhanot family trusted us with making a movie on the life of braveheart, Neerja Bhanot.
We started the exercise of making a difficult film with utmost honesty and the effusive acclaim the film has received is testament to the fact that we succeeded in our endeavour.
The facts of the case are simply thus:
Bling had acquired the rights to make ‘Neerja’ from the Bhanot family. The agreement between Bhanots and Bling clearly spelt out that Bhanots would be paid a fixed upfront amount (which was paid as per the timelines) and a variable amount, which was to be computed as a share of net profits that Bling would receive.
It was always abundantly clear that we would partner with a studio, in this case FoxStar India.
The Bhanot family was always aware of the same and have in fact met the studio reps on many occasions.
To imply otherwise is simply untrue.
Integrity is a very important aspect of Bling’s values and Bling is committed to meeting all its contractual commitments.
All financial transactions post release have been shared with the Bhanot family immediately and in a transparent manner.
Their share of the profits, which is a share of ours, has been immediately offered.
They have declined to accept the same and now wish to get a share of the studio profits.
This is effectively a retrospective negotiation and not as per what is signed by them years ago.
It is unfortunate that despite having a clear contractual arrangement the Bhanots have decided to dispute the financial understanding at this belated stage.
To reiterate, the amounts due to the Bhanots, as per the existing contract have been repeatedly offered by us to them.
To imply anything otherwise, is simply untrue.
There you have it. It will have to be seen how the Bhanots react to this and whether they still choose to go to court.