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TIGER 24, His Life on a World Stage

 

 

 

Written Review by John Delia

There have been a lot documentaries that are made to serve a cause. Many of them are written and directed by activists who want to get the exposure that film can deliver. In Tiger 24, a documentary about the “trial” of a Tiger in India, the director who was filming the Tiger fell into something he was totally unaware of what was about to happen.

“I thought I was making a documentary on a tiger in the wild. But on May 8th, 2015 the tiger I was following killed a man. And my documentary became about something bigger”… Warren Pereira director, writer and producer of TIGER 24

Director, Producer  WARREN PEREIRA in  TIGER24 ©WARRENPEREIRA

In India, the Tiger is a sacred animal and they roam within an area in which they have grown from youth. Most areas where tigers live in the wild are outside the reach of local inhabitants. But Tiger 24 (T-24) named Ustad, happens to live in a protected area with a wall between the Tiger Sanctuary and the village of Ranthambore. The problem lies in that the villager’s Temple is located in Tiger 24’s area and to get to it the villagers have made a path that leads through the tiger’s territory to the holy place of worship.

A Scene from Tiger 24, photo courtesy of Elevation Pictures

It’s an odd situation, but the villagers have lived with it for years without incident. To protect the worshipers there are forest guards, like Rampal Saini. Unfortunately, he was the man that was allegedly Tiger 24’s most recent and fourth kill.  Tiger 24 was deemed a man-eater. According to Aditya Singh, a wildlife photographer, the definition of a man-eater is a tiger that kills and eats people. An outcry by some, including leading tiger expert Valmik Thapar, says that Ustad should be taken out of the area. They feel  that the animal being there is a problem because he has a memory of people as food. Tiger 24 was moved out of the wild to a zoo. This caused a massive social uproar. Activists argued that all four killings occurred in the core area which is supposed to be an inviolate space for Tigers and that there was no definitive proof that T-24 was the killer Tiger. They took their cause to the streets, online, and to the courts.

Thus begins a debate involving the tiger’s domain. Both sides of the question are covered in depth including actual photos, video and media reporting. The documentary has not been rated by the MPAA but it does caution you that there are some gruesome photos of a killing.

A Scene from Tiger 24, photo courtesy of Elevation Pictures

TIGER 24 opens exclusively starting June 16th at Living Room Theaters in Boca Raton, Florida for its premiere theatrical showing. The Tiger 24 website is: http://www.tigernumber24.com for further information.

Additional Film Information:
Cast: Valmik Thapar, Chandrabhal Singh, Balendu Singh, Warren Pereira, R.N. Mehrotra, Rahul Bhatnagar, Aditya Singh, Y.K. Sahu, Sanjay Upadhyay and Sarita Subramaniam.
Narrated by: Warren Pereira
Directed and written by: Warren Pereira
Genre: Documentary
MPAA Rating: Not Rated, a gruesome scene
Running Time: 1 hr. 30 min.
Opening Date: June 17, 2022
Distributed by: W Films, Elevation Pictures
Released in: Limited theaters

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