The Life of Buddha

The Buddha (Thai: ประวัติพระพุทธเจ้า, Prawat Phra Phuttajao, or simply The Buddha) is a 2007 Thai animated feature film about the life of Gautama Buddha, based on the Tripitaka. The film was released on December 5, 2007, in celebration of Thai King Bhumibol Adulyadej's 80th birthday.

The Buddha
Directed byKritsaman Wattananarong
Produced byWallapa Phimtong
Distributed byMedia Standard Co., Ltd.[1]
Release date
December 5, 2007[2]
Running time
100 min.
English (dubbed.)
Budget120 million baht[3]


Production of the film started in 2004 as a personal project by Thai businesswoman Wallapa Phimtong, who was beset by financial difficulties and delays. Initially, Wallapa sought backing and expertise through a Thai government agency, but the funding never came through, and Wallapa become embroiled in a lawsuit over the production.[3]

Wallapa continued with the financing of the film on her own, and at first estimated the cost of making the film at 50 million baht, but those costs doubled. She then sold off her cars, land and personal assets to make the film.[3]

Wallapa said a businessman offered to buy the rights to film for 200 million baht but she refused the offer.

"My ultimate goal, after the film has been screened in theatres, is to distribute free copies to schools nationwide. If I sell the project to the firm, that won't be possible," she said in an interview.[2][3]

Critical response

Bangkok Post film critic Kong Rithdee said The Buddha was well-meaning, but lacked depth and would appeal mainly to children. "[That] means that The Buddha mirrors the national climate of institutional worship and the indifference, if not the ignorance, to how modern society has twisted Lord Buddha's teachings into something much less pure than their original meanings."[4]

A Pali scholar contributed a critique of the film to Prachatai, in equal parts excoriating and lamenting the film's lack of historical accuracy or even dramatic coherence.[5]

See also


  1. "The 10 Amazing New Projects from BFM 2007". Bioscope Focus (Bangkok International Film Festival). 2007-07-29. pp. 4–5.
  2. Payee, Parinyaporn (2007-02-28). "Animated Buddha saga hits the big screen for HM the King's birthday". The Nation (Thailand). Retrieved 2007-07-03.
  3. Payee, Parinyaporn (2007-07-01). "Drawing on faith". The Nation (Thailand). Retrieved 2007-07-03.
  4. Rithdee, Kong. December 14, 2007. "Taking the middle path", Bangkok Post; retrieved from cache on 2007-12-16
  5. Be warned: Thai film: "The Life of Buddha" « Article «
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