AANE MANE FOUNDATION AND FILMS

In order to inform the public about the situation of the Asian elephant, Aane Mane has participated in the making of films and documentaries for cinemas and television.

Elephant blues

Elephant blues

Sypnosis: Elephant Blues is the true story of Ojas, a 4 year-old girl who lives in a forest in South India amongst elephants. She owes this childhood to her mother, Prajna, an Indian woman who left behind everything in search of her identity close to the roots of her culture, to live in the forest, with elephants, much like a hermit known in Indian mythology, Palakapya: a story that haunts her. To fulfil this choice in life, Prajna had to escape from a rigid Indian society, renounce a PhD degree in London, give up material comfort and even the idea of having a child... but the birth of Ojas upsets her plans.

Now, Prajna's sole obsession is to pass on to Ojas the values that guided her in her choices. She knows that the environment in which her daughter grows up will mark her imagination and will forge her identity but her duty as a mother also reminds her that she has to prepare her child to confront human society. So, she devotes every instant of her little girl’s childhood trying by all means to put off the apprehended moment when they both will have to set out to the very world that Prajna had chosen to leave behind.

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HATHI

Hathi

Thanks to the Canadian producer Rock Demers, Prajna Chowta and the filmmaker Philippe Gautier directed a full-length feature film "Hathi" ('elephant' in Hindi) in 1996/97 with 14 months of principal photography in unknown areas of India.

"French-born Philippe Gautier, a former assistant to John Boorman, David Hamilton, and Helmut Newton, directed this beautiful Canadian nature drama examining the tragic reduction of elephants in the wild. In India of the '70s, teenage elephant-trainer Makbul grows close to elephant-calf Vikrama. By 1990, the introduction of modern forestry techniques eliminates the need for elephants to fell and move trees, prompting an auction sale of Vikrama. Makbul is distraught by the separation. Mistreated, Vikrama attacks and kills his new owner. Real-life mahouts (elephant riders) Jamedar Sabu Saab and Kawadi Makbul also served as the models for the characters they portray. Shown in competition at the 1998 Montreal World Film Festival.

Bob Stewart, All Movie Guide, New York Times

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THE OLD ELEPHANT ROUTE

The Old Elephant Route

As a young forest officer in Assam in the 1930's, P.D. Stracey heard of an ancient migratory route of wild elephants on the border between Burma and India through the Chaukan Pass. He mentioned it in his book "Elephant Gold" but never saw it himself.

In 2000, Prajna CHOWTA decides to research the subject.

The Old Elephant Route had a worldwide distribution on television and revealed for the first time the threatened splendours of Namdapha National Park. It is one of the last of the primary forests left in Asia and the only one where tropical vegetation grows below snow-capped mountains.

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ELEPHAS MAXIMUS

Elephas Maximus

In the heart of Asia's most densely populated forest in wild elephants, in southern India, near Mysore, Prajna Chowta and the filmmaker Philippe Gautier, have filmed these great animals with unprecedented proximity as part of an exceptional three part documentary series, in which Prajna is the protagonist.

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