London, Jan 14: A yachtsman by the name of Steve Callahan sailed the Atlantic alone when his 21ft sloop was hit by a whale and sank in a storm a week after leaving the Canary Islands.
He scrambled on to his inflatable life-raft with a few meagre supplies and a basic emergency kit but was 800 miles from land in one of the emptiest parts of the ocean - and convinced he was doomed.
But against all the odds, Callahan survived for 76 days on the 6ft wide dinghy and drifted 1,800 miles before being rescued by fishermen in the Caribbean, the Mirror reported.
He faced sharks, storms, raft punctures and equipment failure on top of his hunger and thirst.
He lost a third of his weight and his body was covered in salt water sores.
He was at mental breaking-point when, after eventually reaching a shipping lane, he signalled nine different ships which all failed to spot him.
Callahan's rescue made headlines around the world in 1982 and he later wrote a best-selling book, 'Adrift', which is mentioned by Yann Martel in 'Life of Pi'.
To help them understand Pi's journey, in 2009 director Ang Lee and film scriptwriter David McGee tracked Callahan down to his home in Maine, USA, and listened in awe to his experiences.
In 2010, Lee asked him to join the film crew as marine and survival consultant. (ANI)