STAR R.AGE’s documentary, The Elephant In Our Room, won the Silver Kinabalu Award at the 2016 Kota Kinabalu International Film Festival in Sabah recently.
The documentary portrays the struggles faced by the orang asli with wild elephants within the Royal Belum State Park in Perak.
During the filming of the documentary, the R.AGE team came face to face with the wild elephants that encroached into the village they were staying in.
The team had initially visited the state park to investigate claims of high mortality rates among orang asli children but very quickly learned of the serious problems caused by wild elephants.
“The villagers constantly faced various elephant attacks at night, as the animals were looking for crops to eat,” said R.AGE senior producer Elroi Yee.
“As documentary filmmakers, we just had to pursue this story. There was no two ways about it,” he added.
A pivotal scene in the documentary featured an interview with the orang asli who had to flee their village following an attack by wild elephants just the night before.
“The elephant attack happened around four in the morning, and my family immediately ran out of bed and into the jungle for safety,” said Kederi, a villager of the Jahai tribe.
The villagers had to stay in a makeshift hut in the jungle while they waited for the elephants to leave their village.
“We might have to stay here up to a week,” he said, as they had faced the same situation just a few months ago.
Watch this award-winning documentary at rage.com.my/elephant-in-our-room