The Elephant Whisperers couple Bomman and Bellie lauded on flight to Ooty by captain and fellow passengers
The subjects of The Elephant Whisperers, Bomman and Bellie, had flown to Mumbai for a press meet. On their flight home, they were acknowledged by the captain.
The Elephant Whisperers won the historic first Oscar for Best Documentary Short at the 95th Academy Awards on March 12 and now India is getting to know the subjects behind the story, Bomman and Bellie. The couple's wedding ceremony was also captured in the documentary and they travelled to Mumbai on Thursday to meet with the press and pose with the shiny golden trophies. It was a moment most people had waited for. On their flight home to Ooty, the couple got a hero's welcome as the captain on the plane and the rest of the passengers cheered them on. (Also read: Bomman and Bellie of The Elephant Whisperers address media in Mumbai, have got a new calf to care for)
The video of the couple was shared online on Twitter by Supriya Sahu, Additional Chief Secretary Environment Climate Change & Forests from the government of Tamil Nadu. The video was captioned, "Flying to Ooty with the stars of "the elephant whisperers" on board. Shoutout to @indigo airlines for the special mention!"
The captain stood up in front of the plane and announced through the loudspeaker, "Some of you might not know on the flight that the award for best documentary at the Oscars was given to The Elephant Whisperers. We have the main team of that documentary on board with us. A huge round of applause!"
He asked them to stand and stated how lucky they were to have them on board. As fellow passengers got out their mobiles to capture the moment, the couple stood at the front of the plane with their folded hands.
Bomman and Bellie raised and cared for young orphaned elephant calves Raghu and Ammu at the Theppakkadu Elephant Camp in Tamil Nadu. The documentary shows their special bond with the young elephants. At Thursday's event, they also revealed that they are now taking care of a new calf Dharmam who has also lost his mother.
In Tamil, Bellie had said at the press meet, "“It is sometimes painful when I bring up elephants and they have be left back in the wild. As a mother you bring up children and then they go away. As a mother, I was apprehensive about bringing up another child. But when they brought Dharmam to me and they told me his mother has passed away. How could I say no to bring up the baby elephant?”
The Elephant Whisperers, directed by Kartiki Gonsalves, is now streaming on Netflix. Guneet Monga of Sikhya Entertainment has produced the documentary short.