India’s Oscar-Winning Documentary The Elephant Whisperers Is Shot at Theppakadu Elephant Camp, the Oldest in Asia

The Oscar-winning short documentary The Elephant Whisperers was shot in the Theppakadu Elephant Camp at the Mudumalai Tiger Reserve in the Nilgiri Mountains in Tamil Nadu. The Theppakadu Elephant Camp in Mudumalai Tiger Reserve is the oldest elephant camp in Asia and was established 105 years back. Oscars 2023: Guneet Monga Reacts to the Elephant Whisperers Academy Awards Win, Says ‘My Heart Is Racing with Joy’.

Situated on the banks of river Moyar, it presently has 28 elephants. A dedicated bunch of Mahouts is providing training and care to these elephants. The director of the movie, Kartiki Gonsalves had stayed in the Mudumalai Tiger Reserve for five long years to shoot the documentary and it has paid off taking her to an Oscar victory. Shah Rukh Khan Congratulates Team RRR and The Elephant Whisperers for Winning Big at the 95th Academy Awards, Says ‘Both Oscars Truly Inspirational’.

The movie, which is of 41 minutes duration, explores the tentative and precious bond between an orphaned elephant Raghu and his caretakers, a mahout couple, Bomman and Bellie. The Mudumalai Tiger Reserve, of which the Theppekadu Elephant camp is part of, has a good population of the indigenous Kattunaykan tribes to which Bommie and Bellie belong to.

The Theppakadu Elephant Camp rehabilitates rogue elephants that enter human habitations and enter into conflict with people. These elephants are given proper training at these camps and converted to Kumki elephants. The elephants in the camp are also used to drive away problematic elephants that enter into human surroundings. Mahouts Kirumaran and Wasim have trained two rogue elephants Moorthy and Easwaran into good formidable animals that have become much gentler.

Moorthy had killed 22 people as a wild Tusker and has been captured and rehabilitated at the Theppakadu Camp. Kirumaran said that Moorthy is so gentle that he lets his grand children play with the elephant these days. However Wasim, the Mahout of Easwaran, sounded a word of caution and said that he had suffered injuries thrice while handling Easwaran.

(The above story first appeared on Sports Grind Entertainment on Mar 13, 2023 10:25 PM IST. For more news and updates on politics, world, sports, entertainment and lifestyle, log on to our website

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