October 06, 2011 9:45am PT by Rebecca Ford
'Real Steel' Director Shawn Levy Says Hugh Jackman Is 'the Nicest Guy in Showbiz' (Video)
Director Shawn Levy, whose past projects include Night at the Museum and Date Night, entered a new realm when he took on DreamWorks’ production for Disney, Real Steel.
Levy told The Hollywood Reporter that working with motion capture was a completely new experience for him. The drama, about an out-of-work boxer (Hugh Jackman) who trains a fighting robot in the year 2020, created the massive bots through a combination of animatronics and motion capture.
PHOTOS: 'Real Steel' Premiere
Levy was adamant that Jackman lives up to his reputation.
“Hugh is rumored to be the nicest guy in showbiz,” said Levy at the Real Steel red carpet premiere. “And those rumors are completely true.”
Jackman’s character, Charlie, starts out really down on his luck and slightly unlikable. THR asked Levy how such a likable actor could play that role.
PHOTOS: 'Real Steel' First Look: Hugh Jackman in Dreamworks' Robot Boxing Film
“Hugh knew that if the movie was going to work, it’s about this guy who is almost hard to like upfront, really becoming redeemed,” said Levy.
“Audiences love this character and they love Hugh and what he brings to the character,” he said.
FILM REVIEW: Real Steel
Jackman also talked to THR on the carpet, and pointed out that many people can relate to his character. “I know people like Charlie, and I kind of have a feeling that all of us can be a little like Charlie,” he said. “If we get knocked down on the wrong time in your life, you can stop believing in the world around you.”
While the Disney picture does not open in theaters until Friday, October 7, there have already been talks about a sequal.
VIDEO: 'Real Steel': Hugh Jackman Helped Evangeline Lilly Relax on Set
“It’s daunting. We need to be a hit first,” said Levy of the possibility of another film “I know we’ve sat in these screenings, and we’ve seen the way audiences react and it’s certainly given us at least the hope that if that reactions continues, we’ll tell this next chapeter.”
Levy’s film co-stars Evangeline Lilly (Lost), Anthony Mackie (Hurt Locker) and Dakota Goya.