Next Gen 2012: Hollywood's Fastest-Rising Stars
Suraj Sharma, 19, makes an auspicious acting debut in Oscar-winning director Ang Lee's hotly anticipated adaptation of the hit novel. The adventure drama, which opens Nov. 21, is garnering awards buzz for the Indian actor, who, in his role as a boy stranded on a boat with a tiger, tackled a Cast Away-like acting feat.
CAREER INSPIRATION: I never really intended to become an actor. Even today, I don't even know if I can act! All I am sure of is that I want to be a storyteller and make movies.
BEST ADVICE: From Ang Lee: "You can be great at what you do. But humility and staying grounded and remembering where you're from is what makes you a good human being."
BIGGEST 2012 ACCOMPLISHMENT: This movie is the only thing I've done, so it's definitely my proudest moment.
CAN'T-MISS TV: I don't watch too much because then I can't study. [He's studying philosophy at St. Stephen's College in New Delhi.]
WORST DAY: One day on Pi, 12 hours in, they were checking another wave sequence and I was on the boat trying my best to prove that I could still stand up. I felt like I was going a little mad.