Sabyasachi Patra

Breaking Free | Wildlife Filmmaking in India

Breaking Free | Wildlife Filmmaking in India

When your passion becomes all consuming, the writing on the wall is inevitable. If you have put on several thousand hours towards your passion, and are still continuing with it, then you realise that it is not a passing fad and is going to stay with you for your life. Now it is upto you to read the writing on the wall and intensify your efforts or give it a quiet burial. Else, there comes a situation in your life when both cant coexist. After a point of time, despite all your efforts, if you need to do justice to both, then there would simply be no time.

I knew that I am moving deeper and deeper into a one way street which is leading me towards wildlife conservation and filming. Today for me that time has come to follow my dream. YES. I have walked away from corporate life. I have quit MAIT as its Executive Director.I have donned a new cap of “IndiaWilds“.

Sabyasachi Patra

However, this was not an impromptu decision. It was the major outcome of my intensive coaching sessions with my personal coach a year and half ago. I knew that it would be sooner rather than later. Still, there is always one part of you, which wants status-quo – to hold on to the present – as that means you can remain within your comfort zone. When I was featured in the OConnor world wide press release in January 2012, I was happy. When I got the prize from Maharashtra Government, I knew this was the first trigger. When my film A Call in the Rainforest got nominated for Wildlife Vaasa Festival, Finland, I decided that this is the time. I felt this moment would not come again, if I remained in a job that demanded so much of my time. It is now or never situation.

And I walked.

I will now devote myself full time into Wildlife Conservation and Filming.

At times in office, the pain of not devoting more time towards my passion of wildlife filming and conservation was unbearable. And I seriously used to hate those moments when journalists used to thrust a DSLR to interview me. When a team from Germany doing a corporate film interviewed me, I knew I had much better equipment. I was wearing a pin-strip suit and knew that there will be moire in the film. I was more concerned about that than what I was to speak. 🙂 Fortunately, I will not have to undergo that feeling anymore.


If I would not have done that, then I would have had a big regret in my life.

One of my industry colleague asked me if I am prepared. Yes. Over a period of time, I have assiduously built up my equipment to cater to the entire film production range and had chosen only the best equipment, whether it is OConnor Fluid Head or Sachtler ENG tripod, Sound Devices 702T recorder or Sennheiser MKH 416 microphone or the many canon lenses etc. Investing in Canon Cinema cameras is in the pipeline plus there are many other supporting equipment, rigs, sliders etc that are on order.I will reveal those one at a time to tickle you taste buds. 🙂

In the field

Now is the time to plan projects, independently as well as in a collaborative mode. I have a couple of ideas and plan to start shooting on one in December. I am fleshing out all the details of the coming projects.

One of the projects is on elephants titled “A God in Distress“.

Update: Since many continue to ask me, I am updating this post.

I have started a film production company called “Wild Tiger Productions”. Apart from wildlife projects, I have also been taking up other documentaries, corporate and commercial projects and working on a script for a feature film. With Canon Cinema camera and various equipment, Wild Tiger Productions is ready to take on any projects. The entire list of equipment can be seen here: http://www.indiawilds.com/about.htm

I have shot for HBO Real Sports USA for womens athletics and on Dutee Chand. The story on Dutee Chand, who was banned for hyperandrogenism and this year qualified for Rio 2016 Olympics can be found here: http://www.indiawilds.com/diary/dutee-chand-on-and-off-the-field/

Recently I have completed a documentary for Maharashtra Forest Department titled “Jewels of Thane Creek” which was funded by the Indo-German biodiversity Project on Coastal and Marine Protected Area. The full film can be seen in youtube link below :  https://youtu.be/qHLXDXF3KgU

 

Our ambitious project on leopards is still under production. We have covered Rajasthan, Assam, Uttarakhand, Gujarat, Maharashtra, Karnataka, Odisha. However, the pan-India scale of this project has resulted in inevitable delays as well as massive cost escalation. While working on this project, I am also trying to raise funds. Since this is a labour of love, I will only release the film when I am fully satisfied.

Meanwhile, if anyone of you have any interesting concepts then I would love to hear. Shoot your ideas, how so ever wild those might be. I am all ears :).

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Sabyasachi Patra

Sabyasachi is an award winning Cinematographer and shoots for international broadcasters, feature films and corporates to make a living. He is a passionate wildlife filmmaker and photographer and has won awards and accolades for his documentary 'A Call in the Rainforest'. He has been striving to make his films and photographs full of life and emotion and write articles to educate and evangelise the need for conserving the last tracts of vanishing wilderness and wildlife in our country. He hopes that his wildlife films, photographs and writings force people to pause, look, ponder and ultimately take action.
Sabyasachi Patra
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