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New "Life Of Pi" Footage Released

Sara Itkis |
June 20, 2012 | 5:58 a.m. PDT

Staff Reporter



If you have gone, or plan to go see "Prometheus," "Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter," or "Ice Age: Continental Drift" in theaters, you may be curious about what the clip of something involving an ocean, a lifeboat, and a tiger was doing mixed in with the trailers. 

Ask any film buff why he or she is looking forward to the Christmas of 2012, and enjoy the outburst of anticipation and excitement that is sure to follow. Allow me to explain: "The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey." "The Great Gatsby." "Les Miserables." "Django Unchained." The list goes on; have I conveyed my meaning?  Until recently, competing against these formidable titles was "Life of Pi," an adaptation of Yann Martel's novel of the same title. However, the incredible Christmas-time lineup for this year swayed Fox to move up the release date to November 21, 2012. This way, the only large title that the film will be contending with is "The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn––Part 2," to be released the previous week.

Directing the project is Ang Lee, of "Brokeback Mountain" (2005) fame. It is fitting that this masterful director was entrusted with the task of adapting a unique novel like "Life of Pi." The story tells of Pi Patel, played by newcomer Suraj Sharma, whose life is changed when the cargo ship carrying himself, his family, and their zoo animals (yes, zoo animals) from India to Canada sinks. Left alone in a lifeboat with a zebra, hyena, orangutan and 500-pound Bengal tiger named Richard Parker, Pi must learn what it takes to survive. The novel also serves as a powerful metaphor on the meaning of faith and of fiction. One cannot help but wonder how Lee has gone about structuring the cinematic retelling of such a novel, what with its steep lack of dialogue––or for that matter, human characters––and its many layers of meaning.

A small taste of the film has been playing in clips shown during the previews of several movies (see above), but only in the 3D screenings, which is the format in which the film will be released. The same clips played at CinemaCon earlier this year, impressing the audience and raising much anticipation. In addition to Sharma, the cast includes Irrfan Khan, Gerard Depardieu, Tobey Maguire––who will once again play the narrating character, as he does in "Gatsby," and an array of CGI animals. 

In addition to the uncut clips, "Life of Pi" has released several beautifully stylized images, a short teaser of what appears to be a tiger attack, and a sample of the score composed by Mychael Danna ("Little Miss Sunshine," "500 Days of Summer"). These can be found on its official website.

You can reach reporter Sara here.





Craig Gillespie directed this true story about "the most daring rescue mission in the history of the U.S. Coast Guard.”

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