Big Cats on the Big Screen: Snow Leopard Trust and Asian World Film Festival Join Forces

The Snow Leopard Trust and the Asian World Film Festival are joining forces to raise awareness for the endangered snow leopard and its ecosystem in the high mountains of Asia.

The Snow Leopard Trust (SLT) is the world’s oldest and largest conservation organization dedicated to protecting the endangered snow leopard. This elusive big cat lives in the high mountains of Asia. Despite its vast range, spanning twelve countries and over 1 million square kilometers, the snow leopard is exceedingly rare: between 3,900 and 6.500 cats are estimated to remain.

The Asian World Film Festival (AWFF) celebrates Asian World cinema by bringing a broad selection of films from more than 50 countries to Los Angeles in order to draw greater recognition to the region’s wealth of filmmakers and strengthen ties between the Asian and Hollywood film industries. The Third Annual Asian World Film Festival will take place from October 25 until November 2, 2017, in Culver City, CA.

The Asian World Film Festival’s main cinematic award is named after the snow leopard. “This cat is one of Asia’s most iconic animals, and an ambassador of its rich and diverse cultures”, says Kyrgyz filmmaker Sadyk Sher-Niyaz, founder and chairman of the festival. “It’s a natural fit for our award and our festival!”

“The snow leopard is incredibly photogenic, yet so rare and elusive that only very little film footage of the cat exists”, says Michael Despines, the Snow Leopard Trust’s Executive Director. “It’s also endangered and faces a high risk of extinction. Through this partnership with the Asian World Film Festival, we hope to make audiences in Asia and the rest of the world more aware of this unique animal and its plight.”

On August 24th and 25th, leaders from all snow leopard range countries meet in Bishkek, Kyrgyz Republic, for the 2017 Global Snow Leopard & Ecosystem Forum. This high-level event will be attended by leaders and influencers from the political, cultural and business sectors as well as international media, and will provide a first opportunity for both organizations to present their work to a large audience.

“The Forum in Bishkek will resonate throughout Asia and globally”, says Sadyk Sher-Niyaz. It’s the perfect moment to unveil the newly designed Snow Leopard Award.”


Snow Leopard Trust:

Matt Fiechter, Communications Manager | | +46 70 349 9810

Asia World Film Festival:

Jane LaBonte, Weissman/Markovitz Communications | | +1 818 760 8995.

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