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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.


1. Tell us a bit about your role!

I’m the programme manager for Wildscreen ARK – which involves managing the development and licencing of Wildscreen’s newest content and education platform. 

2. What’s your background? How did you get to where you are today?

Funny you asked! I worked for Wildscreen a LONG time ago as a media researcher. I took 11 years out as a science teacher and have come back to the fold! It’s been a circuitous route but I don’t think I could do what I’m doing today without that experience.

3. What motivates you?
Autonomy, mastery and a porpoise.

4. If you could change one thing about the natural history industry, what would it be?

I’d make it more accessible to everyone. I am very lucky to have parents and grandparents that loved nature, so I’ve always felt connected with it and understood its value. There are many people who aren’t so lucky and see it with separation, or indifference, or fear – which is risky for nature, and for us.

5. What are your career goals?

Leave whatever I apply myself to, better than I found it.

6. Favourite moment working at Wildscreen?

They say you should never meet your heroes, but I remember dancing next to a barefoot Michaela Strachan at the Panda Awards. She can really move!

7. What’s your favourite story from nature?

A personal one but a good one – my grandpa was a beekeeper, and I remember walking with him when I was about 7, along a Lincolnshire field buzzing with insects and flowers. He got me to stroke the fur of this white-tailed bumblebee, which was incredibly soft. I think it was the first time I let go of other people’s feelings about nature (“bees sting!”) and was curious, connected with and respectful of it. 

8. Describe working for Wildscreen in three words!
Fulfilling, varied, fun!
9. If you could turn into any animal for a day, what would you be and why?
A swift. They always look like they’re having a great time!
10. What’s a fun fact about you?
I participated in a Beyonce-themed dance showcase for Womankind, a charity in Bristol, a few years ago. I’m not sure I could move like that now!!