October 28, 2011 / 3:36 PM / 6 years ago

Big Buddha statue found in Cambodian 'Tomb Raider' temple

PHNOM PENH (Reuters) - A 2.4 metre (8 foot) headless Buddha statue estimated to be 800 years old was found in the Cambodian temple featured in the Angelina Jolie film, “Lara Croft: Tomb Raider”, officials involved in restoration work said on Friday.

The sitting Buddha was uncovered by heavy rain at Ta Prohm temple in the Angkor Wat complex in Siem Reap, said Im Sokrithy, deputy director of the local department that oversees the area.

Another statue was found beside a path and that led to the discovery of the bigger statue under a tree.

The temple is undergoing a $4 million restoration by an Indian-led team.

“It is indeed a magnificent example of Khmer art,” said Saurav Ray, first secretary at the Indian Embassy in Phnom Penh.

“Both statues are wonderful pieces of Angkorean art and are among the most valuable findings in recent history, beyond doubt,” he said.

Reporting by Prak Chan Thul; Editing by Alan Raybould

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