Based on the best-selling novel by Yann Martel, is a magical adventure story centering on Pi Patel, the precocious son of a zookeeper. Dwellers in Pondicherry, India, the family decides to move to Canada, hitching a ride on a huge freighter. After a shipwreck, Pi is found adrift in the Pacific Ocean on a 26-foot lifeboat with a zebra, a hyena, an orangutan and a 450-pound Bengal tiger named Richard Parker, all fighting for survival.
Ang Lee's Life Of Pi adaptation has made a rather radical casting change, with Tobey Maguire (arguably the project's most recognisable star) having been cut from the film altogether.
Maguire has initially been cast to play a writer who interviews the film's young protagonist, after he is discovered washed ashore in the wake of a catastrophic naval accident. However, Lee has now had a change of heart, describing Maguire's presence as too jarringly recognisable.
"To be consistent with the other casting choices made for the film, I decided to go with an entirely international cast," said Lee. "I very much admire Tobey and look forward to working with him again in the future."
To be honest, it always did seem slightly odd to have a major Hollywood star cropping up alongside a cast of unknowns in a fairly minor role. As for Maguire himself, there are clearly no hard feelings in the wake of the decision.
"I fully support Ang's decision to go a different direction for this role in Life of Pi," he told THR. "Ang shared a lot of the film with me, and what I saw was absolutely beautiful."
Lee has apparently reshot Maguire's scenes with Rafe Spall, who doesn't have quite the same international cache as the man who played Spider-Man. Not yet anyway.Source: www.totalfilm.com
Tobey Maguire has been cast in Ang Lee's Life of Pi adaptation.
The Spider-Man actor will play a reporter who interviews Pi as an older man, following his experiences on the boat.
Presumably his character will play an important role in Lee's technique of adapting the story, as the key events will surely be filtered through the two men's interaction.
Acting-wise, things have been a little quiet for Maguire recently but that looks set to change: he's appearing in The Details with Elizabeth Banks and Ray Liotta this year, and he'll be playing Nick Carraway in Baz Luhrmann's Great Gatsby adaptation.
The lead role of Pi will be played by newcomer Suraj Sharma, with Slumdog Millionaire actor Irrfan Khan portraying his older incarnation, and the animals are expected to be CGI-animated. The film, like Gatsby, will be arriving in 3D.
A number of directors, including M. Night Shyamalan, Alfonso Cuaron and Jean-Pierre Jeunet, previously attempted to adapt the prize-winning novel to no avail, so it's promising to hear that Lee's version is still moving forward.
Life of Pi is expected to arrive in cinemas on 14 December 2012.Source: www.totalfilm.com
Ang Lee has cast unknown Delhi high schooler Suraj Sharma in his 3D adaptation of Yann Martel's novel Life Of Pi.Source: www.totalfilm.com
4 November 1970
5' 8½" (1.74 m)
27 December 1948
Gérard Xavier Marcel Depardieu
5' 10¾" (1.80 m)