“Two Women Did This”: Producer Guneet Monga On Oscar Win For The Elephant Whisperers

The Elephant Whisperers wins Oscar, Kartiki Gonsalves
The Elephant Whisperers, directed by Kartiki Gonsalves and produced by Guneet Monga, has won Best Documentary Short Subject at the 95th Academy Awards.

The Elephant Whisperers is the first Indian film to win an Oscar in this category and the third to be nominated after The House That Ananda Built and An Encounter With Faces which competed for Best Documentary Short in 1969 and 1979 respectively.

The other nominees this year in the category were Haulout, The Martha Mitchell Effect, Stranger At The Gate, and How Do You Measure A Year?

The dairy brand Amul posted a heartfelt tribute featuring Monga and Gonsalves proudly displaying their Oscars next to an elephant and the Amul girl. It was captioned as “Haati Mere Saathi”.

Monga shared the tribute on her Instagram Stories and captioned it “BEST”.

The Elephant Whisperers wins Oscar

Director of the film Kartiki Gonsalves and producer Guneet Monga took centre stage to accept the trophy.

Monga in a Twitter post shared her reaction and wrote, “We just win the first ever Oscar for an Indian Production! Two women did this! I am still shivering.”

The documentary, set in the Mudumalai National Park, is the tale of an orphaned elephant calf named Raghu in the care of Bomman and Belli, an indigenous couple. It celebrates not just the bond that develops between them as well as nature’s beauty. The Elephant Whisperers was released on Netflix in December 2022.

India is having an Oscar moment this year – in addition to The Elephant Whisperers, the globally viral ‘Naatu Naatu’ from SS Rajamouli’s blockbuster RRR also won the Best Original Song. Deepika Padukone introduced the live Naatu Naatu performance on stage.

The Oscars are being hosted by Jimmy Kimmel (for the third time) at the Dolby Theatre in Los Angeles. Winners so far include Ke Huy Quan – Best Supporting actor for Everything Everywhere All at Once and Jamie Lee Curtis for Best Supporting Actress.

Suggested Reading: Behind The Camera: 5 Women Who Redefined Indian Entertainment With Their Work