(Cover) - EN Movies - Ang Lee says making Life of Pi was so "challenging" he initially wondered how he would "pull that off".
The Oscar-winning director helmed the movie adaptation of the book by Yann Martel, which is about a boy who forms a close relationship with a tiger after a disaster at sea.
Initially, Ang was unsure whether he would be able to do the story justice as there are so many fantasy elements to it.
"Very challenging. It's quite a brilliant book but I don't see it as movie friendly. It has a lot of internal descriptions and there's a philosophical ending. How do you pull that off'" he told BBC Asian Network. "Plus physically you have a tiger and a boy on a small boat. How do you choreograph that' And lots of water. And [it] doesn't have a role for Tom Hanks!"
Tom famously starred in another movie about a person who is battling to survive alone called Cast Away.
Ang began to realise how exciting the possibilities for Life of Pi were when he considered making the release in 3D. It was then that he understood how much he could do with the story.
"Thinking back, that's the pivotal point of me deciding to do the movie because I thought maybe 3D can crack it and open up the chance because it would be... about putting yourself in different illusions. I thought that might be a solution to making this movie. I was looking forward to the journey, to exploring the new media," he explained.
Ang told unknown 16-year-old Indian actor Suraj Sharma to play the lead character of Pi Patel in the picture.
He only auditioned for the part because his brother was keen to do so and was astounded when he triumphed. Suraj can vividly remember the first time he met Ang - during a later round of try outs - as he was convinced he had blown things.
"After I did [the audition] for the first time I thought Ang was going to kick me out. Why would he waste his time on this' He directed me and talked to me for five minutes and that made things very real and I did it for the second time and ended up in tears," Suraj recalled.