Yann Martel says calls the film ‘visually sumptuous.’ (Canadian Press)
“It’s visually extraordinary. The 3D element is not cheap — it’s done very intelligently to bring out the elements. And the Indian element is much more important than I realized. I’m glad to see India on the screen, you so rarely see India on the screen.”
Martel’s novel follows a boy marooned on a lifeboat with a Bengal tiger and combines a menagerie of animals with several layers of metaphor. The 2002 novel was translated into 38 languages and spent 57 weeks on the New York Times bestseller list. Martel’s most recent novel is 2010’s Beatrice and Virgil.
Martel believes Taiwanese director Lee has done justice to his story.
“It’s very faithful to the book, not only in what happens, but in what the book tries to do — try to say that reality is not a fixed thing, it’s open to interpretation. That the movie does very well,” he said.
“I certainly hope that Ang Lee and his team get the reward they deserve because they worked so hard on this. I’m certainly enjoying it, I’m sort of riding along on the coattails of the movie and I’ll do that for a while,” he added.
Lee has credits such as Lust, Caution, Brokeback Mountain and Sense and Sensibility and is a darling of the New York festival, having previously opened it in 1997 with The Ice Storm.