Oscars 2023: MM Keeravani delivers unique musical speech on 'Naatu Naatu' win; Guneet Monga says ‘The future is audacious and the future is here’
After the win, Keeravani also spoke to media sources to share his thoughts on the award
At the 95th Academy Awards which took place in Los Angeles on March 13 (IST), India won two awards. Naatu Naatu from SS Rajamouli 2022 epic RRR won the award for Best Original Song while the documentary The Elephant Whisperers bagged the trophy for Best Documentary Short Subject. As MM Keeravani recived the award for Naatu Naatu, he sang a song, dedicating the award to India. The music composer’s unique speech was on the tune of the Carpenters' Top Of The World.
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Keeravani said, “Thank you Academy. I grew up listening to carpenters, and now here, I am with the Oscars.” Then, the musician started signing the lines, “There was only one wish in my mind, so were Rajamouli and my family. RRR has to win every pride of India and must put me on top of the world.' Thank you Karthikeya, and Thank you all!'”
Rahul Sipligunj and Kaala Bhairava also performed the song on the Oscars stage. Ram Charan and Jr NTR, on the other hand, did not appear on stage. The performance, which received a standing ovation at the ceremony, was introduced by Deepika Padukone.
After the win, Keeravani also spoke to media sources to share his thoughts on the win, saying, “It's just the beginning of everything. For the world, particularly the Western world, folks are more on Indian and Asian music. It's just long due. I feel very happy to open doors and the world to embrace my culture.”
Naatu Naatu won in the same category at the Golden Globes earlier this year. The track was competing with Applause from Tell It Like a Woman (Diane Warren), Hold My Hand from Top Gun Maverick (Lady Gaga and BloodPop), Lift Me Up from Black Panther Wakanda Forever (Tems, Rihanna, Ryan Coogler, and Ludwig Goransson), and This Is a Life from Everything Everywhere All at Once at this year’s ceremony.
The Elephant Whisperers won Best Documentary Short Subject at Oscars 2023. The short film is the first Indian film to win an Oscar in this category, and the third to be nominated, following The House That Ananda Built and An Encounter With Faces, both of which competed for Best Documentary Short in 1969 and 1979. Kariki Gonsalves directed the film, which was produced by Guneet Monga, who expressed her delight on social media, saying she was still ‘shivering’ at the achievement.
In her acceptance speech, Kariki said, “I stand here today to speak on the sacred bond between us and our natural world. For the respect of indigenous communities. For entity towards other living beings, we share our space with. And finally for co-existence. Thank you to the academy for recognizing our film highlighting indigenous people and animals. To Netflix for believing in the power of this film. To Guneet myProducer and my entire team and finally, to my mother father and sister who are up there somewhere, you're the centre of my universe. To my motherland India.”
She also took to Twitter, writing, “We just win the first-ever Oscar for an Indian Production! Two women did this! I am still shivering,” Later, Guneet also took to her Instagram handle to share another message after the win. She posted a snap of her on the Oscars stage writing, “Thank you Mom Dad Guruji Shukrana To my Co-Producer Achin Jain, Team Sikhya, Netlflix, Aloke, Sarafina, WME Bash Sanjana. My lovely Husband Sunny. Happy 3 months anniversary baby! Kartiki for bringing & weaving this story. To all the women watching. The future is audacious and the future is here. Let's go!”
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The Elephant Whisperers is a story about an orphaned elephant calf named Raghu who is cared for by an indigenous couple, Bomman and Belli, in the Mudumalai National Park. The documentary celebrates not only their friendship but also the natural beauty of their surroundings. The Elephant Whisperers will be available on Netflix in December 2022.