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About The Two Brothers
Of the two brothers, KUMAL is the more assertive and courageous—at least at the start of the movie. Says Jean-Jacques Annaud, "He is the dominant one of the pair.”

After being captured by McRory, though, he winds up in the Circus Zerbino as the heir apparent to an old performing tiger that's on his last legs. Kumal shows too much spirit to suit the bad trainer Saladin, who finally beats him into submission. He performs his tricks listlessly "with no desire for life and no guts,” says Annaud. That is, until he is reunited with brother Sangha and they escape together.

SANGHA, the more timid of the brothers, also goes through a character evolution, but in a much different way than Kumal. "This brother started in life as the dominated one,” says Annaud, "but becomes a very aggressive, fighting tiger.” Sangha is left orphaned when his mother is apparently killed in a tiger hunt, and is taken home by the Normandin family after their son Raoul finds him hiding in a burrow.

The Normandins ship Sangha off to a private menagerie owned by the local Prince whose father kept animals to fight in public spectacles. The zookeeper recognizes that Sangha is a good candidate, because his fear can easily be turned into aggression. The Prince decides to stage a fight to show how tough they both are, if he can find another tiger to do battle. That sets the stage for the film's climax and the brothers' reunion.


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