The Lion WhispererFeb 01
KEVIN RICHARDSON THE LION WHISPERER
Kevin has always shown an interest in all types of creatures large and small and from an early age at just 3, was breeding crickets under his bed and keeping a pet toad called “Paddajie”. He grew from a young boy who cared for so many animals that he was called “The Bird Man of Orange Grove” in his home town to an adolescent who ran wild and, finally, to a man who is able to cross the divide between humans and predators. As a self-taught animal behaviorist, Richardson has broken every safety rule known to humans when working with these wild animals. Flouting common misconceptions that breaking an animal’s spirit with sticks and chains is the best way to subdue them, he uses love, understanding and trust to develop personal bonds with them. His unique method of getting to know their individual personalities, what makes each of them angry, happy, upset, or irritated-just like a mother understands a child-has caused them to accept him like one of their own into their fold.
Kevin has used his unique relationship with these large predators to make documentaries and commercials while working at the Lion Park in Johannesburg, South Africa. It was there that award winning documentary maker Michael Rosenberg spotted Kevin’s unusual abilities and decided to capture these special relationships on film which kick started off Kevin’s documentary making career with Dangerous Companions, and other shows like Growing up hyena.