Entertainment

Tobey Maguire completes Life of Pi casting

Casting for the film adaptation of Yann Martel's Booker-winning novel Life of Pi has been finalized with Tobey Maguire being the last person cast.
Canadian author Yann Martel celebrates after winning the Man Booker Prize for Fiction 2002 in London, England. A film adaptation has been in development since his victory. (John Li/Getty)

Casting for the film adaptation of Yann Martel's Booker-winning novel Life of Pi has been finalized.

Tobey Maguire has signed on to appear in Ang Lee's version of the Canadian author's book. This reunites the former Spider-Man star with his Ice Storm director.

Maguire is set to portray a journalist who interviews the lead character of Martel's novel, which captured the Booker in 2002.

Joins 17-year-old unknown

He joins Suraj Sharma  — a 17-year-old unknown from New Delhi who beat out 3,000 others for the main role back in October — and Irrfan Khan, a well-known Indian actor who recently appeared in the third season of the HBO series, In Treatment.
Indian actor Irrfan Khan is set to portray a middle-aged version of the main character. (David Livingston/Getty )

Sharma will play the teen Pi while Khan will be the middle-aged Pi re-telling his tale of crossing the ocean.

This marks a huge step for the movie as plans have been in the works for a film version since Martel's win.

The book, centering on a boy lost at sea for 227 days with four animal companions, a Bengal tiger named Richard Parker, a hyena, a zebra and an orangutan, has won several international awards and was CBC Radio's Canada Reads novel for 2003

M. Night Shymalan (Sixth Sense, Unbreakable, Signs, The Last Airbender) was first tapped to direct the film but left because of scheduling conflicts. Then other directors came on board, including Alfonso Cuarón, known for Y tu mama tambien, Children of Men and Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban.

Lee — who helmed Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon, Sense and Sensibility and Hulk  — decided to take on the project in 2009.

The film is reportedly already shooting in 3-D in Taiwan and India and is expected to unspool in December 2012.