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Indian documentary ‘To Kill A Tiger’ nominated at Oscars 2024 for Best Documentary Feature

Delhi-born filmmaker Nisha Pahuja’s documentary, ‘To Kill A Tiger’, has been nominated for the 96th annual Academy Awards in the Best Documentary Feature section. This nomination was announced on Tuesday, and the Oscars are set to be held on 10 March at the Dolby Theatre at Ovation Hollywood in Los Angeles. This marks the third consecutive year that an Indian documentary has secured an Oscar nomination alongside ‘Bobi Wine: The People’s President’, ‘The Eternal Memory’, ‘Four Daughters’, and ‘20 Days in Mariupol’. 

‘To Kill A Tiger’ revolves around a father’s relentless pursuit of justice for his 13-year-old daughter. The story unfolds in the aftermath of Ranjit’s daughter being abducted and gang-raped by three men in Jharkhand. The documentary sheds light on the gravity of the crime and brings to the forefront the challenges faced by her family in coping with the trauma. It also delves into the family's legal obstacles in their quest for justice for their child. 

A sneak peek into the film’s official website encapsulates the essence of this 90-minute Indian Oscar entry, ‘To Kill A Tiger’ “Ranjit goes to the police, and the men are arrested. But Ranjit’s relief is short-lived, as the villagers and their leaders launch a sustained campaign to force the family to drop the charges. A cinematic documentary, ‘To Kill A Tiger’ follows Ranjit’s uphill battle to find justice for his child”. Pahuja, the director, remarks, “The film was a record of a very painful time in their lives but it also captured the immense love and strength of an exceptional family who had nothing to be afraid of and nothing to hide”. 

The film received a theatrical release last year in North America, a rarity for documentaries. So far, it has bagged 21 awards, including recognition from prestigious events such as TIFF, Palm Springs, Doc Aviv, and the Director’s Guild of Canada. It has also earned critical acclaim, being named a New York Times Critic’s Pick and included in the Washington Post’s Best Movies of 2023. Currently screening in selected theatres across the United States, this documentary has been produced by British Indian actor Dev Patel, Indian American actress Mindy Kaling, and Indo-Canadian poet Rupi Kaur.

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