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Wildscreen Festival Tanzania Filmmaker Case Studies: Jigar Ganatra

In the first in a series of Tanzanian filmmaker case studies, we meet Jigar Ganatra, Co-founder and Chair of AFRISOS.

Tanzania: The next generation of wildlife filmmaking talent

Why Tanzania is one of the world’s richest sources of untapped potential when it comes to wildlife filmmaking.

BBC Studios Natural History Unit Announced As Headline Sponsor for Wildscreen Festival 2024

The broadcaster is lending its support to the world’s biggest wildlife film festival.

Interning at Wildscreen

Hi, I’m Cameron!  I’m an intern here at Wildscreen – I started in September 2023 and as of writing this have been here for a little over a month and have absolutely loved my time here. Initially, I was beyond nervous when I was first invited to the interview stages after applying – my voice shook, I forgot the questions I had pre-planned, and I had forgotten the answers I had prepared – but in the end, I’m so glad I did it, because it’s got me where I am now. 

Even though I was clearly nervous, the interviewers were lovely, and I was surprised at how down to earth it was. I had always expected office work to be suits and ties, abrupt “mornings” and “byes” being the only conversations, with a constant air of seriousness. And then I got to Wildscreen and my entire worldview shifted. Almost immediately I was greeted with friendly smiles and people asking if I would like a cup of tea. It was clear everyone worked incredibly hard to get their jobs done, but there was always an aura of general cheerfulness and fun within the office – I mean, what other workplace environment consists of you talking about cool and interesting animals all day?

And it’s clear Wildscreen cares about you too: I find speaking up and joining in conversations incredibly difficult and find it much easier to just sit back and listen, and here I am being addressed almost every time I’m nearby. I’m asked about what I got up to in the week, how my weekend was, what types of things I’m into, and it’s such a delightful experience to see that people genuinely want to hear about me. 

A great thing to know if you’re thinking of applying to Wildscreen is that most of the interviews and meetings that take place are in fact ‘informal’. With the questions and speaking order being given out beforehand, and people engaging with what you have to say, it makes it a much more comfortable and welcoming environment than what I originally had expected from an office job. 

Luckily, the Wildscreen office resides right outside of the Bristol Temple Meads train station – it’s about a 30 second walk from the station itself and is easy to find. Once there, a typical day in the Wildscreen office involves walking in and being met with a myriad of “Good mornings!” and “How was your weekends?” followed by a short brief on the tasks for the day. The rest of the day consists of working on said tasks, but there are a ton of conversations throughout the day – Wildscreen has taught me that work doesn’t have to be boring! Take that, child me – work is fun.

Wildscreen revolves all around nature in terms of creative careers and what can be done to help it thrive, connecting people through storytelling. It felt so satisfying to be around people who could ramble about animals and their intricacies just as much as I could. There’s also a lot of support via a mentoring program and you look at what you can do to set yourself up for the future, with goals for the short-term, mid-term, and long-term. For example, some of my personal goals were to set up a LinkedIn profile and sort my CV and other work-related documents into folders for easier access. Additionally, you’re provided with a Google Slides ‘journal’ intended for you to do a personal weekly review, as well as be a place to put a portfolio of work and all the things that will lead to professional development.