The Last Mahout

Runtime: 15:00
Country: Laos
Language: Thai
Category: 2019 | Short Film (2019)

‘The Last Mahout' is a cinematic short film produced/directed, shot and edited by wildlife filmmaker Tania Esteban about Vee & Mae - two souls that share an unbreakable bond built on love and trust. Vee, an 80-year-old Mahout, has been with Mae Mahn since she was born over 27 years ago - and ONLY uses his VOICE to guide her. A non-riding, no chains, non-stick wielding way forward into the 21st century. Mahn is a matriarch Asian elephant in her prime, and so the MandaLao and WWF Laos team are looking at the incredible Nam Phouy national park as a potential release site to allow individuals like her to breed in the wild as well as rescue elephants. Mae is one of the lucky ones...but as Vee ages, who will keep up his tradition for the next generation of elephants to come? Join them for a day in the life of a modern Mahout and follow their journey into the wild and beautiful landscape of Laos and the future of elephant conservation.
Tania Esteban, Director, A Lion’s Tale
Tania Esteban, Writer, A Lion’s Tale
Tania Esteban, Producer, A Lion’s Tale
Vee, Key Cast, “Vee”, NA
Richard Collins, Music, A Lion’s Tale

Tania Esteban

Tania is a bilingual Zoologist, wildlife camera assistant and researcher with a passion for visually stunning, emotive storytelling and natural history. A graduate from the University of Leeds (1st class), and MA Wildlife filmmaking masters in partnership with the BBC, she is using her research skills and creative talents to produce cinematic and stylish wildlife documentaries that are entertaining and connect with audiences. Experience in research/location work at the BBC on Wild Cats, Digital researcher on projects alongside Planet Earth 2 , Blue Planet II, researcher on Wild Metropolis, series researcher on Canadian Wildlife for Channel 5 – and now with Silverback Films on the ‘Halo’ for the wildlife series Our Planet in collaboration with WWF for Netflix. Tania designed and conducted 10 months research on bats highlighting their fascinating behaviours, was a camera assistant/focus puller on drama sets and a fully licensed CAA UAV drone pilot. A Panasonic and Atomos brand ambassador and producer of exclusive video & photographic content, Tania uses her shooting skills working with 4K/UHD/HDR and broadcast department as well as giving talks at multiple national events including NEC. She is also a guest lecturer at several schools and gives talks about wildlife film and storytelling. She is knowledgeable about the business and all areas of the industry including camera, lighting, sound, editing, risk assessments, scheduling, grading, mixing, producing/directing and scriptwriting. Her final student BAFTA nominated and award-winning wildlife film included actress Virginia McKenna and the Born free foundation, where she gained exclusive access to the largest ivory burn in Africa’s history; and filmed the human-lion conflict in Meru National Park with Will Travers.

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