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Jaaved Jaaferi introduces viewers to various aspects of the animal kingdom, some funny and a few fierce

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What is common between Sher Khan’s deep baritone and Mickey Mouse’s squeaky voice? Actor Jaaved Jaaferi has lent his voice to both characters in Hindi.

The list of his voiceovers is long. Toggling between a range of voices and emotions comes naturally to him, like dancing and acting. Up next, he will be seen in National Geographic’s series Animals Gone Wild.

The show will have Jaaferi take up multiple roles: Tony Tiewallah, Camouflage Ray and Gullu Guide. The characters have been created by him. Accompanying him will be a gamut of animals, virtually making an appearance from their respective natural habitats. African elephants, llamas, dogs, crocodiles, chimpanzees, lions... “We had to keep the credibility alive. The challenge was how much of Javed should be there in terms of voice and character. It should not be an overdose,” says Jaaferi over phone.

Though Jaaferi was part of the creative process, a research team put together all the facts about animals, their mannerisms and why they do what they do. The actor has learnt some fascinating aspects of the animal kingdom through this show. “I have seen ducks suddenly coming close and attacking you, if you don’t give in to their whims and fancy. I have seen a swan attack a gorilla, or a cat scare away a big dog. There is harmony as well, like for example when you see how whales protect their babies. It is beautiful how animals can connect,” he adds.

It was an interesting creative process, says Jaaferi, adding that they spent quite a few months during lockdown working on this. “The footage that you see, has been sent from all over the world. They have been shot on phone cameras. We had to collate them and a team of experts gave all the information,” says Jaaferi. Each episode features around four to six animals.

An animal lover, Jaaferi says he never enjoyed watching a circus. “Why make elephants stand on two legs and lions jump through hoops?” He adds, “I love any form of creature existing in Nature. I have always felt that some animals can be domesticated and some just can not. Let us be careful and not intrude into their territory.”

Animals Gone Wild will première on National Geographic India on March 22 at 8 pm.

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Printable version | May 15, 2021 12:16:22 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/entertainment/movies/why-is-jaaved-jaaferi-hanging-out-with-lions/article34117293.ece

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