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Buddha on big screen

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Mythology and movies A still from the movie
Mythology and movies A still from the movie

Y. SUNITA CHOWDHARY

‘Gautama Buddha’, based on K. Sivananda Murthy’s book, is a bid to highlight the little-known facts.

There have been many films on Gautam Buddha and his life has been dramatised to a great extent and the quest for enlightenment has attracted many followers all over the world. Alladi Sridhar breaks new ground in revealing the fascinating story of Prince Siddhartha and his spiritual transformation into the Buddha, the great teacher who changed the entire world.

Producer Radhakrishna an NRI says that his father Dr K. Sivananda Murty wrote a book in English Gautam Buddha and wanted to make a film on it. His ambition is to spread the message of peace. The producer remarks that many of us are unaware of Buddha’s complete history and he was pleasantly surprised and gratified after reading his father’s book. “What we know of Buddha is that he was moved after seeing a dead body and the text books in our schools give us an inadequate picture. That’s not true at all, Buddha, my father says after referring over 100 books, was aware of death and diseases and he was disinterested in life right from the beginning. The world needs such a movie about Buddha to vividly illustrate the sacrifices he made and the relevance of his teachings to all people.”

He adds, “This film traces the origin of King Suddhodhana, the birth of Buddha, the enlightenment and life thereafter. The opening scene in the film begins with Buddha’s mother dreaming of a white elephant and king Suddhodhana seeking the interpretation of the dream from sages. They tell the king that very soon he will beget a son who will not become a king but a saint.” The two-hour-ten-minute film is releasing in three languages - Tadgatha Buddha in Hindi, Gautama Buddha in Telugu and The Path Finder in English on the February 14. The film-maker says he has no commercial motive and is taking the films to schools and corporate sectors to spread the message of peace.

Alladi Sridhar has made quite a few historical films and his serials Adi Parasakthi and Jai Veer Hanuman is being aired on television. Sunil who plays the Buddha from Ujjain is not entirely new to the silver screen. He has worked in TV serial Bagavatham and is a Bapu discovery. Kausha plays Buddha’s wife and Parvati Melton is the courtesan.

The onscreen Buddha who is also a leading hero in Rajasthan says he never found Telugu difficult and finds himself blessed for getting to work in such historical roles, “I did some homework like meditation, read a lot of books on Buddha but Dr. Sivananda Murthy’s script was so powerful, his dialogues are so engrossing that while you watch the film you get a feeling that you are on some very interesting spiritual journey. There is no scope for boredom, the film will change you, believe me.”


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