The ultimate irony of this Internet phenomenon is that although Budzinski was very lucky to turn on his camera that day and not lose focus or sight of the beasts before him, he never posted his video on YouTube. In fact, he didn't even know what YouTube was.
A fellow vacationer on the safari that day in 2004, Jason Schlosberg, failed to bring a video camera on his trip and asked Budzinski for a copy of the video, because he'd "never seen something so amazing."
For more than two years, the Battle at Kruger remained something Budzinski and Schlosberg occasionally shared with family and friends when they stopped by for a visit.
Then in May, Schlosberg finally decided to share the clip with a friend of his from South Africa who'd moved to Ohio and had been pestering Schlosberg to see the video. To avoid long lines at the post office, Schlosberg put the clip on the Internet. "I figured, you know, YouTube is easier than going to the post office. So I put it up there on YouTube and now it's at several million hits, which is something we — I never would have imagined."
Despite believing Schlosberg's actions were a bit opportunistic, Budzinski gives him credit for making Battle at Kruger a global sensation. "I thought, well, good for you, Jason. You had the, the vision to do something."
They're hoping by becoming Internet folk heroes they can benefit from a newly formed partnership. The National Geographic Channel is planning to air a special this fall documenting the story, and the two anticipate other opportunities as well.
"It is surreal. It's an exciting ride, and if it lasts another month, if it lasts another year, we'll take it for what it's worth. We're enjoying it," said Schlosberg.
The entire Kruger video can be seen on ngcwild.com. Click HERE for more i-CAUGHT.