- Court orders the seizure of Omoni Oboli's movie Okafor's Law
- It also bans sale of the movies in any form
- Oboli has a running battle with Jude Idada who claims he owns the copyright to the movie as he was contracted by the actress and her husband to write the script
- Idada claims the Obolis did not pay him a fee of $5,000 he charged them and they never gave him credit for the money so he goes to court
- The Canada based scriptwriter claims the Oboli did the same thing to him with Being Mrs Elliot
This is a double embarrassment for respected Nollywood actress Omoni Oboli as court orders the seizure of her controversial movie Okafor’s Law.
Justice Ibrahim Buba of a Federal High Court in Lagos has issued an Anton Piller order, directing the seizure of a film titled Okafor’s Law directed by Nollywood producer Omoni Oboli.
The court also issued an interim order, suspending the release and launch of the film, in any movie theatre or cinema house on March 31, pending the determination of a motion on notice before the court.
The judge ordered the seizure of all copies, materials, projections or infringing materials, relating to the subject matter.
The orders followed an ex parte application filed by a company, Rancoteur Productions Ltd, on behalf of a Canada based script writer, Jude Idada.
The plaintiff had filed the suit through Anthony Idigbe, seeking an order, halting the premiere and release of Okafor’s Law pending the determination of a copyright infringement suit filed against Oboli.
Joined as first to third defendants in the suit are: Dioni Visions Entertainment, Omoni Oboli, and The Filmore Ltd.
The exparte application was moved in terms by counsel from the law firm of Idigbe, O. Otudor, who urged the court to grant the orders as prayed.
Delivering his ruling on the exparte motion, Justice Buba granted the orders as prayed.
The court made the following orders:
“An order of interim injunction, restraining the first to third defendants, whether by themselves or their privies, from premiering the feature film “Okafor’s Law”, in Lagos or any part of Nigeria, pending the hearing of the motion on notice.
“An order of interim injunction, restraining the defendant from releasing the featured film in any movie theatre or Cinema house on March 31 pending the hearing of the motion on notice.
“An order of interim injunction, restraining the defendants from distributing the featured film, pending the determination of the motion on notice.
“An Anton piller order is granted to the plaintiff, to enter into the defendant’s premises, Cinema, Studio and other places of dissemination, to seize all copies of infringing materials relating to subject matter.
“An order, directing the defendants to deliver and surrender to the plaintiff’s solicitors, all products and packages with the inscription, “Okafor’s Law” and volume of transaction or trade which have been done by defendants.
“An order directing the defendants to permit the court’s bailiff, and such other persons not exceeding four (4), to enter the premises on any working day of Monday to Saturday at 8am to 8pm, to remove all products or packages with the name “Okafor’s Law”
“An order for a search to be conducted at Viva Heights Odudu Eleyiwo St, Block 15, plot 17 Oniru Victoria Island, and Plot 1378D Joseph Namah close, off Karimu Kotun St, Victoria Island and all other places where Okafor’s Law is stored and sold.
“An order declaring that a failure of defendants to comply with the court’s order will put the plaintiff at liberty to apply for committal to prison of such person,”
March 29 has however being fixed for the hearing of the motion on notice.
Okafor’s Law is billed for release on March 31. Its premiere was to be held on Saturday, March 24 but was stopped as it was about to commence at the IMAX Cinema in Lagos. And this left Oboli in tears while trying to inform seated guests of the development.
Watch Omoni Oboli burst into tears as Okafor's Law was stopped from being premiere below:
NAIJ.com had reported in 2016 that Idada lays claim to the film Okafor’s Law as his intellectual property. He claimed he wrote the script and that the only thing Omoni Oboli and her husband had is the title of the movie Okafor Law.
He claimed that in September or October 2015, both parties agreed to have a contract signed and they agreed he would be paid $5,000, which as at that time was N750, 000. However, the writer said, they neither paid him nor gave him credit for the script.
He alleged that Oboli took the work he had done regarding Okafor’s Law, and developed it without giving him due credit. Oboli, however, went ahead to set March 31, as a release date for the movie, in spite of a demand letter sent to her, as well as a copyright infringement suit instituted.
Okafor’s Law stars seasoned actors like Richard Mofe Damijo, Toyin Aimakhu, Blossom Chukwujekwu, Ken Erics, Yvonne Jegede, Halima Abubakar, Gabriel Afolayan, Funke Bucknor among other Nollywood stars.
Idada is the coordinator of Toronto Black Film Festival.