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.
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.
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 won the Best Original Song, and filmmaker Shaunak Sen's All That Breathes was nominated in the Best Documentary Feature Film category, which was won by Navalny. All the nominees attended the Oscars with the bonus presence of actress Deepika Padukone who was a presenter, the third Indian star to present at the Oscars after Persis Khambatta and Priyanka Chopra. She introduced the live Naatu Naatu performance on stage.