Amit Masurkar’s acclaimed political satire Newton weathered a plagiarism row to gross Rs.9.55 crore in India between its release on Friday and Tuesday, according to figures released by distributor Eros International.
Greatly boosted by its selection as India’s entry for the Foreign Language Film Oscar, Amit Masurkar’s critical darling held its own against the two other major Hindi film releases of the week, Haseena Parkar and Bhoomi. Starring Rajkummar Rao, Anjali Patil, Pankaj Tripathi and Raghubir Singh, the film follows a strong-willed election officer who is bent on conducting elections in a troubled village of Chhattisgarh. Newton has been produced by Drishyam Films and released on September 22 by Eros International and Colour Yellow Productions.
Masurkar’s film was also in the news over unfounded allegations that it has been lifted from the Iranian arthouse film Secret Ballot (2001). Iranian director Babak Payam dismissed the accusations. “I saw the film and there is no sign of plagiarism,” Payami told Cinestaan. “These are completely different films. Any similarities between the two films are broad and I don’t see any specific stylistic or structural similarities. These are two different films on a common theme.”