Hopefully you have had a chance to read the first installment of the Men of DreamWorks REAL STEEL, featuring Director Shawn Levy.
In this post I am going to share what Sugar Ray Leonard (boxing extraordinaire) had to say about working on REAL STEEL.
(from left to right) Director Shawn Levy, Boxing guru Sugar Ray Leonard, Actor Anthony Mackie, Actor Hugh Jackman.
Boxing Consultant Sugar Ray Leonard
Most people know that Sugar Ray Leonard was one of the best boxers in the industry, but even I didn’t know that REAL STEEL was his first film to consult as a boxing expert on.
Have you ever been asked to work on a movie before or is this your first?
No. My first. I know Stacey Sly is a friend and our kids go to the same school. one day I was at a Parents-Teachers meeting and um I saw her with this– script. She said, “Ray I may have a job for you.” And I didn’t quite know she was joking or being just facetious.
And when she showed me the script, let me read the script and I still couldn’t see it. I could not see Robot Boxers. I got on set and met Hugh, I kinda’ got a better understanding of the, the premise.
Then I met Shawn Levy and it was like yes, but I still wasn’t too sure. I wasn’t sure until I saw what the camera shot and I, I watched it replay.
And, and I saw these robots because of the technology, it was amazing and um it was fun. It was a lot of fun. It was very exciting to me.
How much did you have to train Hugh? Did he have any kind of boxing skills?
Well, Hugh was an athlete, and he did have a little background. Amateur Boxing. But my objective with him was not really the fact that– showing him how to box per say, although I did show him how to throw certain punches or execute. My biggest goal was to make sure that he felt like a, a Boxer. He exhibited the facial expressions of a Boxer because to throw a punch is one thing, but to show that expression is another thing. That’s what sells the audience, well that’s what sells the fans.
When you see the boxing scenes of the robots are they believable to you?
They are. And I say that because uh at first my whole perception of robots were you know kinda’ rock em’ sock ‘em robots you know. The first skill, mechanical things. But again we’re talking technology. Has allowed these, huge metal monsters to really do all the things that … they did though.
They was able to emulate the Boxers. ‘Cause I gave each one kinda’ their own certain style. Like that big guy Zeus. He’s so big and monstrous and strong that I, I kinda’ thought about George Foreman you know. Just being like BOOM! BOOM! BOOM!
And I looked at Atom, Atom reminded me of myself because he was kinda’ like big eyes and he skinda’ like sits back. Kinda’ unassuming and I gave him the kinda’ movement and kinda’ what I used to do.
Have you kids seen the movie?
Oh yeah, I took my two children, my son Daniel who is 10 and my daughter Camille who is 14. I took my wife and my mother-in-law. So we went to the screening and at some point I turned around and saw my kids screaming. Jumping up and down because it was action. It was all this kinda, this entertainment! The Robot BOOM! BOOM! BOOM! BOOM!
And then at some point I turned around and saw my wife and mother-in-law crying. And they were like “Oh, he is SO cute!”
And I knew that we kinda hit home with the demographics across the board. Because my kids loved it, and my wife and mother-in-law truly liked it. It was really cool. It was satisfying. And we talked about the movie on the way home. So I knew we, we did okay.
Sugar Ray Leonard was right, they sure did okay! I have seen this movie twice now and really enjoyed it both times. I did feel like watching the robots I was really watching real boxers. Especially the way they walked and carried themselves.
Disney/DreamWorks provided me with an all expenses paid trip to LA for an advance screening of Real Steel. All thoughts and opinions are 100% my own. I am in no way obligated to provide positive reviews.
Thank you Louise of MomStart.com for taking such awesome pictures.
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