My Octopus Teacher (2020)

After years of swimming every day in the freezing ocean at the tip of Africa, Craig Foster meets an unlikely teacher: a young octopus who displays remarkable curiosity. Visiting her den and tracking her movements for months on end he eventually wins the animal’s trust and they develop a never-before-seen bond between human and wild animal.

My Octopus Teacher takes us to a spectacular world few humans have ever seen, rich with unimaginable vistas, creatures and characters.

Production notes

Foster gets to witness the ingenious methods an octopus uses to hunt, camouflage and move. But why does this creature want to hang out with Foster? When sharks start to chase the diver’s tentacled friend, he must weigh up whether it is right or wrong to meddle with the cycle of nature.

The nature documentary directed by Pippa Ehrlich and James Reed portrays the Western Cape coast, a world hidden from humans. The documentary project which took eight years to complete also depicts Foster’s journey as a human being: how instead of seeing differences, he starts seeing similarities, also between the human and the octopus.

Katariina Rönnqvist (translated by Sami Salo)

  • Language: English
  • Subtitles: N/A
  • Distribution: Films Transit International
  • Cinematography: Roger Horrocks
  • Editing: Pippa Ehrlich, Dan Schwalm
  • Music: Kevin Smuts
  • Sound: Barry Donnely