This summer will mark the release of the new Warner Bros. film, The Legend of Tarzan, which stars Alexander Skarsgård as Tarzan and Margo Robbie as Jane. Business Wire reports that while on location in Africa, the Tarzan production has teamed up with a very special ally to bring awareness to an alarming trend plaguing the continent. The entire production is working with international Non-Governmental Organization (NGO) Stop Ivory to fight against the poaching of elephants. This initiative is in place to help preserve the jungle and save the elephants from extinction. Stop Ivory is a program registered in the United States and the United Kingdom, and is committed to fostering a safe environment for elephants all over Africa.
The African landscape is home to the Tarzan production which was filmed on location in Gabon, Africa. Josh Ponte is a documentary filmmaker, conversationalist, and the technical advisor on the set of Tarzan. He provided location services as well as offering his knowledge on local history and culture for the production. As a conservationalist, Ponte has dedicated the last 15 years of his life to saving Gabon’s wildlife. His main focus has been to eradicate poaching and the gathering of ivory in Gabon.
This is an important partnership as the number of elephants left in the wild is dropping rapidly. So rapidly in fact, since 1986 that the population has dropped by two-thirds. Over 50 percent of wild elephants inhabit the Gabonese jungles. Without proper protection, it’s estimated these elephants will be wiped out within 10-15 years.
Along with Stop Ivory, the Elephant Protection Initiative aids them in spreading awareness. Warner Bros. studio and everyone involved with the Tarzan production is committed to sharing this message with the world.
Warner Bros. and Stop Ivory have come up with creative ways to get the word out about this crisis. This is an effort to get in touch with the global community. They hope to garner as many allies against the poaching of Gabon’s surviving jungle elephants, while reinforcing Tarzan and the central themes of humanity and its deep connection with nature and wildlife.
Warner Bros. Studios has produced a film short titled From Gabon to the Big Screen. The film documents director David Yates’ journey with Ponte across the Gabonese landscapes to scout locations for Tarzan. The purpose of the short film is to bring viewers face-to-face with the beautiful animals they’ve joined forces to save. The two roam the rainforest to highlight the integral role elephants play as the ecological backbone of the region.
Tarzan himself (Alexander Skarsgård) is the face of the campaign. He is featured in a recent public service announcement (PSA) about the Elephant Protection Initiative which can be seen in Regal Cinema theaters across the United States. Margot Robbie will also be featured in an international Stop Ivory PSA, which will also be seen in theaters.
Warner Bros. has used The Legend of Tarzan to take a stand with these organizations as a way to give back to the community and the world at large. Elephants are an important asset to the animal kingdom, and important to the Tarzan folklore. They are treasured and worshiped all over the African continent. Unfortunately, some people don’t cherish the elephants as John Ponte and Warner Bros. do. This is why a collective effort is needed to stop the illegal hunting and killing of these animals before it is too late.
The Legend of Tarzan stars Alexander Skarsgård, Margot Robbie, Samuel Jackson, Christophe Waltz, and Djimon Honsu. The film opens in theaters in the U.S. on July 1, 2016.
[Image via Warner Bros.]