Ang Lee on Oscar win: "I went blank...was very touched"


(CBS News) Ang Lee, took home the Best Director Oscar for "Life of Pi" said two-time Academy Award winner said he "went blank for a little while" when his name was called on Sunday night.

Special feature: Oscars 2013

"As I walk up, everybody seems to be very happy that we win this award," he said. "They all stood up and they cheered. They keep on cheering. And I had to give that big bow before they sit down. The energy of the room was very high. So I was very, very touched. It was genuinely a very happy moment for me."

The director admitted that despite his win, he still isn't sure exactly why the film resonated with a broad, international audience. "I don't know. It's a mystery to me," Lee said. "When I made the movie, I think I if I was doing a show and I might have said, 'This is a philosophical book and we're making a very expensive movie,' and I carried the anxiety for a long time. ... I didn't know what I could expect, but then I saw how the movie played throughout the world, and each different culture, they grabbed different things."

The film's star, Suraj Sharma, had never acted before he was plucked from obscurity to play the main character, Pi Patel. 

"I think it's miraculous," Lee said of Sharma's skillful debut. "In some ways that, to me, is the purest form of performance. Of course, he's not an experienced actor, but he is Pi. As a filmmaker, I don't know how much more I could ask."