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HomeEntertainmentPriyanka brought her motherly experience to Tiger

Priyanka brought her motherly experience to Tiger

On the occasion of

Earth Day

, Bollywood star

Priyanka Chopra

is joining hands with directors

Mark Linfield

and

Vanessa Berlowitz

to bring the audience a unique tale of survival, with the upcoming documentary ‘Tiger‘.
The actress, who has lent her voice to a number of films and projects over the years, will narrate the nature documentary and tell the story of

Ambar

, a young tigress raising her cubs in the forests of India.

Ahead of the release, ETimes sat down with director Linfield and co-director Berlowitz, who shared their insights into the making of this cinematic experience and why they believe it’s a testament to India’s pride and conservation efforts. They also spilled the beans on getting Priyanka on board and revealed she was the ‘only choice’ for the film.
While they were at it, they also shared their perspective on how being a mom to

Malti Marie Jonas

helped her identify with the tigress and why this Desi Girl is the ‘Tiger’ of Hollywood… Excerpts:
‘Tiger’ is a family-friendly documentary that takes us deep into the forests of India unlike ever before. What was your experience shooting here?

Mark Linfield: Oh, good. Keeping it family-friendly was our intention. We don’t want to exclude anyone from watching your fantastic Tigers. So if you think we’ve hit all age groups, that’s great. The shoot was a long journey. We spent almost five years from beginning to end, in the different reserves. It was made incredibly easier by our helpful Indian crew. We were completely reliant on the local Tiger experts to basically show us where the Tigers were to navigate any difficulties that might have happened and to keep us safe. The forestry department as well, was just super duper helpful.

Our experience was very different from having our Indian team along with us. I think if we hadn’t had that, it would have been a bumpy ride, partly because we wouldn’t have found any Tigers.
The Indian forests are absolutely beautiful. One of the things we wanted to get across from this interview is that Indians should be incredibly proud of this film, because not only is it the best portrait of the world’s most popular animal, but it also showcases your beautiful forests.
Considering you’re the most populous country on earth, it’s stunning how much wildlife you have left, because most countries, including the UK, have done a really bad job of preserving theirs or conserving theirs. And it’s incredible what you have left. When you think that in 2006 you only had, was it one and a half thousand Tigers? And now there’s over three and a half thousand. It’s one of the world’s only conservation success stories or one of the best conservation success stories at any rate. So you should all be incredibly proud. And we hope this film is a sort of a tribute to that.
What was the idea behind roping in Priyanka Chopra to narrate this story? How did her being a mother to Malti help give a voice to this story of a mother’s fight for her cubs’ survival?
Vanessa Berlowitz: So, Priyanka was the number one choice and only choice. We were on a mission to get Priyanka because we wanted an authentic Indian storyteller for this story about India’s iconic animal. We wanted that voice that would connect both to Indian audiences, but also internationally and she’s got an amazing voice.

We were so delighted when she saw the film and was keen to do it. But she also loves tigers. I think she really brought the kind of maternal experience that she’s having at the moment. She was laughing at the cubs and how naughty and cheeky they were because she was like, ‘oh, I recognize this behaviour and their different personalities’.
I think she really felt for Amber. She really could identify with the unbelievable defensive protection that Amber feels when Shanker’s prowling or there are other threats to the tigers. You could hear it in her voice. She was like, ‘I’m there. I feel this’. But equally, she was amused by the cubs and I think brought a real likeness of touch and humour to her performance. Yeah.
This is Priyanka’s third movie with Tiger in the title. She’s done the Oscar-nominated ‘White Tiger‘ and backed ‘To Kill a Tiger‘. Would you say her name is now synonymous with Tiger in Hollywood?
Mark: Well, I hope so. Yes. I mean, not all of those shows are wildlife shows. They are different kinds of tiger. But, yes. Our sort of colleague from Disney, Roy Conley, who’s one of the producers, got a chance to ask her in person at one of her screenings for her other shows, whether she’d be interested in tigers. And she went, ‘Absolutely! They’re my favourite animals. I love tigers.’ I think she sponsored a couple of cubs or something. You know, she absolutely adores tigers.
‘Tiger’ begins streaming on Disney+ Hotstar on April 22, on Earth Day.