The Bombay High Court today directed the Competition Commission of India to expedite the hearing into a complaint filed by ‘K Sera Sera Digital Cinema’ against Walt Disney Studios and distributors of the movie ‘The Avengers: Age of Ultron’ slated for April 24 release in India.
The petition said the Walt Disney Studios has decided to release the movie only in the digital form through the ‘D Cinema Technology’ which ensures high-level technical performance, reliability, protection from piracy and quality control.
The petitioner and other distributors like NBC Universal Media, Sony Pictures, Warner Bros and Paramount Films use E Cinema Technology.
“Digital Cinema Initiatives was created in March 2002 by a group of international production houses such as Disney, Fox, Paramount, Sony Pictures and so on. The movies produced and distributed by Walt Disney are now only released in D Cinema Technology,” the petition states.
“The release of the movie ‘Avengers Age of Ultron’ in an anti-competitive and restrictive manner would cause great prejudice to the fair competition in the market and would force theatres to only approach Walt Disney Studios for digitally showing the movie despite there being other players in the market like the petitioner,” the petition states.
On April 9, the petitioner company filed a complaint with CCI which posted it for hearing after 15 days of scrutiny.
“The movie is scheduled to be released on April 24. The Commission should pass some interim order before that or the high court should restrict the distribution and screening of the movie till our petition is heard,” petitioners’ counsel Janak Dwarkadas said.
A division bench of Justices V M Kanade and A R Joshi asked Competition Commission of India to expedite the hearing into the complaint and decide on the interim relief sought by the petitioner company before April 24.