Oscars 2023: India’s ‘Natu Natu’, ‘Elephant Whisperers’ win big internationally

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‘Naatu-Naatu’ — the popular hit song’ from the 2022 Telugu film ‘RRR’ — made history by becoming the first-ever song from an Indian production to win at the 95th Academy Awards on Monday.

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

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

Politicians, including Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Congress leader Rahul Gandhi, defence minister Rajnath Singh, Delhi chief minister Arvind Kejriwal, congratulated the film’s team for the landmark achievement.

Modi in two tweets, congratulated India’s twin Oscars win as other than ‘Naatu Naatu’, ‘The Elephant Whisperers’ also bagged the ‘best documentary’ honour.

‘Naatu-Naatu’ song, featured in the film set in the British-era, is a celebration of Indian culture and pride. It features a rustic percussion beat and showcases the inner energy and stamina of the characters. The film has won several accolades including Golden Globes award in January where the hit song grabbed the ‘the best original song’ title.

The Elephant Whisperers, 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. The documentary celebrates not just the bond that develops between them as well as the natural beauty of their surroundings. The Elephant Whisperers was released on Netflix in December 2022.

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