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Home > Screenings > Off the Fence > Hippo King

Producer: A Terra Mater Factual Studios, Skyland Productions, Into Nature Productions production, Doclights, NDR Naturfilm, The WNET Group, PBS and CPB

Executive Producer: Andrea Gastgeb Sabine Holzer

Genres: Documentary, Factual


1 x 60’

An old, battle-scarred hippo bull was once a giant king amongst the largest concentration of hippos on this planet. Normally hidden under water or concealed in the cover of darkness, the hippo is an animal cloaked in mystery and largely misunderstood. For the first time ever, we get to know the true character of one of the planet’s largest land mammals, as we reveal the life story of a charismatic hippo bull in Africa’s Luangwa Valley, starting from the day he was born.

His story spans thirty-five years - from being a small, vulnerable hippo calf trying to find his place in a world amongst giants, to how he survived the cruel blows nature handed out to him. From losing his mother, and being ousted from his natal pod, to facing the harshest of droughts, and being threatened by predators. But as he learnt to walk the ancient pathways of survival in the Luangwa Valley, he grew into a stronger, more confident bull and was headed for a path of war. Two decades later, he was finally ready for the ultimate battle - that made him King.