By Jeremy Hance
In 2012 a record 668 rhinos were slaughtered by poachers in South Africa for the horns, which are used as scientifically-debunked medicine in Asia. Rhino poaching has hit record levels worldwide over the past few years, but no where is the carnage greater than South Africa, which houses well over half of the world's rhinos. Thus it's no surprise that when student filmmaker, Anne Goddard, arrived in South Africa to film zebra behavior, she quickly became enthralled by the dark and tragic drama surrounding the country's rhinos.
The result of her trip is an intense short film on South Africa's poaching crisis, dubbed Rhino Wars, that follows an anti-poaching team on the ground--and in the middle of the night--as they attempt to safeguard one of their country's natural treasures.
Rhino Wars is making its New York City premiere Saturday, February 2 at the 3rd Annual New York Wildlife Conservation Film Festival. Ahead of its premiere, Goddard answered some questions from Mongabay.com about the film and her career. As a student filmmaker, Goddard has already received a number of accolades: including best student film for Rhino Wars in the 3rd Wildlife Conservation Film Festival in Washington D.C.
AN INTERVIEW WITH ANNE GODDARD
Mongabay.com: What is your background?
Anne Goddard: I am the writer/producer/presenter of the short film Rhino Wars. I recently graduated from Elon University with a Strategic Communications degree and am currently doing PR for the Smithsonian’s National Zoo.
Mongabay.com: How long have you been making films? What are some other examples of your work?
Anne Goddard: This is my first attempt at filming. I did a wildlife film internship with a production company called Africa Media in Mossel Bay, South Africa this past August. It is lead by National Geographic’s shark and wildlife expert, Ryan Johnson. He taught me everything from handling a camera to editing to the ethics of wildlife filming.
Mongabay.com: Why did you choose the illegal trade in rhino horn as the topic of your film? More....