M. Night Shyamalan almost directed Life of Pi

Although Shyamalan would have liked to adapt Yann Martel’s novel, he acknowledged that Ang Lee “made a beautiful movie out of it.”

LIFE OF PI, 2012. TM and ©Twentieth Century Fox Film Corporation.  All rights reserved./Courtesy of Everett Collection

©20thCentFox/Courtesy Everett Collection

From the early successes of “The Sixth Sense” and “Unbreakable” to a dry spell in the mid-2000s that included “After Earth” and “The Last Airbender,” M. Night Shyamalan’s career his roller coaster has taken him through all levels of the world. Hollywood. The multi-hyphenated newcomer has found success in recent years directing mid-budget genre films like “Old” and “Knock at the Cabin,” but that doesn’t mean he’s stopped thinking about some of the bigger projects he’s been flirting with for years. . In a new interview The Hollywood ReporterShyamalan reflected on some of the projects he’s come close to directing in his three-decade career.

“I love the book ‘Life of Pi’ and I wanted to do it. But Ang Lee made a beautiful movie out of it. That’s what I wanted to do,” Shyamalan said. “Between the first two films, I wrote a special script called ‘Labor of Love,’ which turned into a huge bidding war in Hollywood. Then Fox bought it and they fired me as a director because I was a kid. I’ve almost made it many, many times since then, but right now I probably never will.”

But while every filmmaker has a few lost projects they wish had come to fruition, Shyamalan doesn’t really regret being left out of these two films. The director explained that he is happy to have found a creative home at Universal, where he can continue to develop original projects, which are given to fewer and fewer filmmakers.

“They’ve been very good about letting us do our thing and they’re very nice people,” he said of Universal. “They didn’t shy away from the original film, which was to their advantage. I wish the entire industry would embrace the original movie and bring it back. At one time, the entire industry was focused solely on original movies. In the past, finding and supporting new voices reaching a large audience was the most important thing, and now Universal has given that task.”

“Knock at the Cabin” is now playing in theaters.

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