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Shawn Levy Didn't Want That Climatic Shot From 'Real Steel' To Be In The Trailer

Photo of Kevin Jagernauth By Kevin Jagernauth | The Playlist October 20, 2011 at 2:00AM

Director To Helm Comedy Pilot At ABC Starring Mandy MooreNeedless to say, if you haven't seen "Real Steel" this post contains spoilers, so if you have yet to take in Shawn Levy's robot boxing movie, you might want to move on. But then again, if you've already seen the trailer for the movie, one of the big rousing moments from the climax has already been ruined for you. But you might not know it yet. So again, we're going to dive right into this so move on if you don't want to know.
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Director To Helm Comedy Pilot At ABC Starring Mandy Moore



Needless to say, if you haven't seen "Real Steel" this post contains spoilers, so if you have yet to take in Shawn Levy's robot boxing movie, you might want to move on. But then again, if you've already seen the trailer for the movie, one of the big rousing moments from the climax has already been ruined for you. But you might not know it yet. So again, we're going to dive right into this so move on if you don't want to know.

In an interview with Bleeding Cool, Levy went on at length about that whole Hugh Jackman-jumping-in-the-air moment during the final battle of the movie, the decision to even go that route, and how he didn't really want to put that shot in the trailer. Here's what he had to say:

...But I thought that if the movie is about a boy who thinks that a robot is magic but eventually learns it’s his father who has something special in him, we had a way to use that shadow function in a way that is satisfying. I came up with this idea, of Charlie Kenton’s boxing background making this robot unique. I remember reading the script and saying “I know exactly what this needs”

That fucking shot, that up-in-the-air moment where it pays off, I could give you a whole article on just that. When we were editing trailers I said “Don’t use that shot, I want that to be a surprise” but what happened was, every time people saw that shot, that was their favourite shot in the trailer.

I shot it two ways. In one version, Atom does that move on his own. In that version of the movie, we would be confirming that Atom is magic. Some thought we should do that, but I felt that if we do that and confirm that he is magic, the movie loses its wonder and suddenly skews very young, if the robot is doing things on his own.

While that woman who is suing "Drive" for misleading marketing is clearly insane, she did get everyone talking about how trailers do sometimes sell something completely different, or in this case, ruin the best moments of the film. This writer didn't much care for "Real Steel," but the big final fight is pretty damn rousing and that moment of Jackman delivering the knockout blow -- while totally cornball -- is immensely effective, but we have to say, because we saw the trailer, we saw it coming a mile away and the impact was diminished. There's a lesson in here somewhere, but it's not like the studios will be changing the way they sell movies anytime soon. And with "Real Steel" number one at the box office two weeks in a row thanks in part to that trailer, why should they?

Anyway, "Real Steel" is now in the rearview for Levy as he's got a busy schedule in front of him. He's gearing up to shoot "Frankenstein" next spring, is keeping an eye on that "Cannonball Run" remake in case Guy Ritchie doesn't want to do it, and he's also taking a quick detour to television. Deadline reports that Levy will helm the pilot of a comedy set up at ABC (produced by Levy's 21 Laps) with Mandy Moore set to star. Penned by "Wedding Crashers" co-writer Bob Fisher, it's a family comedy centered around a newlywed couple. We presume this will be a contender for fall 2012 TV season.

This article is related to: Films, Shawn Levy, Real Steel


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