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May 23, 1997 (New Zealand)
June 6, 1997 (United States)

Buddy is a 1997 New Zealand/American family comedy film written and directed by Caroline Thompson and produced by Columbia Pictures and Jim Henson Pictures. and was released on May 23, 1997 in New Zealand, and June 6, 1997 in the United States. It starred Rene Russo as Mrs. Gertrude "Trudy" Lintz and Robbie Coltrane as her husband.

The film was based on the life of a gorilla called Massa with elements of Gertrude Lintz's other gorilla Gargantua (who was called "Buddy" at the time). In real life, Massa became the oldest gorilla on record until 2008, while Buddy/Gargantua died young as a circus attraction and his remains are now on display in a museum.

The gorilla suit used for Buddy was created by Jim Henson's Creature Shop.


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