Click to Skip Ad
Closing in...
How Quentin Tarantino & Robert Rodriguez Made Josh Brolin's 'No Country For Old Men' Audition Tape How Quentin Tarantino & Robert Rodriguez Made Josh Brolin's 'No Country For Old Men' Audition Tape 'MacGyver' Movie Reboot And New TV Series Pilot On The Way 'MacGyver' Movie Reboot And New TV Series Pilot On The Way Josh Brolin Says He's Starring With Jessica Chastain In A Movie About George Jones & Tammy Wynette Josh Brolin Says He's Starring With Jessica Chastain In A Movie About George Jones & Tammy Wynette Watch: Robert Richardson Explains Why He Took His Name Off 'World War Z' And More In 58-Minute Cinematographer Talk Watch: Robert Richardson Explains Why He Took His Name Off 'World War Z' And More In 58-Minute Cinematographer Talk George Miller Says He Originally Wanted The Music In 'Mad Max: Fury Road' To Only Come From The Doof Warrior George Miller Says He Originally Wanted The Music In 'Mad Max: Fury Road' To Only Come From The Doof Warrior Review: Coen Brothers' 'Hail, Caesar!' Starring Josh Brolin, George Clooney, Scarlett Johansson, Tilda Swinton, And More Review: Coen Brothers' 'Hail, Caesar!' Starring Josh Brolin, George Clooney, Scarlett Johansson, Tilda Swinton, And More Naomi Watts Confirmed For David Lynch’s ‘Twin Peaks’ Revival; Tom Sizemore Joins Cast Naomi Watts Confirmed For David Lynch’s ‘Twin Peaks’ Revival; Tom Sizemore Joins Cast Watch: Quentin Tarantino Talks 5 Movies To Watch Before 'The Hateful Eight' In 7-Minute Video Watch: Quentin Tarantino Talks 5 Movies To Watch Before 'The Hateful Eight' In 7-Minute Video SAG Award Winners: ‘Spotlight’ Wins Best Ensemble, Leonardo DiCaprio, Idris Elba & Brie Larson Also Score Big SAG Award Winners: ‘Spotlight’ Wins Best Ensemble, Leonardo DiCaprio, Idris Elba & Brie Larson Also Score Big Review: ‘Jane Got A Gun’ Starring Natalie Portman, Joel Edgerton & Ewan McGregor Review: ‘Jane Got A Gun’ Starring Natalie Portman, Joel Edgerton & Ewan McGregor Mel Gibson Gave Nate Parker Advice On Making 'The Birth Of A Nation' Mel Gibson Gave Nate Parker Advice On Making 'The Birth Of A Nation' The 25 Most Anticipated New TV Shows Of 2016 The 25 Most Anticipated New TV Shows Of 2016 The 20 Best Documentaries Of 2015 The 20 Best Documentaries Of 2015 The 20 Best Films Of 2015 The 20 Best Films Of 2015 The 25 Best Action Movies Of The 21st Century So Far The 25 Best Action Movies Of The 21st Century So Far The 25 Best Sci-Fi Films Of The 21st Century So Far The 25 Best Sci-Fi Films Of The 21st Century So Far The 25 Best Animated Films Of The 21st Century So Far The 25 Best Animated Films Of The 21st Century So Far The 50 Best Films Of The Decade So Far The 50 Best Films Of The Decade So Far The 25 Best Horror Films Of The 21st Century So Far The 25 Best Horror Films Of The 21st Century So Far Terry Gilliam Talks The "Simplistic" Films Of Steven Spielberg, Dumbing Down Of Audiences, 'Don Quixote' Start Date & More Terry Gilliam Talks The "Simplistic" Films Of Steven Spielberg, Dumbing Down Of Audiences, 'Don Quixote' Start Date & More

Shawn Levy Confirms He'll Direct 'Real Steel 2,' But Will Have To Wait For Busy Hugh Jackman

The Playlist By Jeff Otto | The Playlist September 25, 2011 at 3:39AM

Casting Will Decide Whether The Director Shoots 'Fantastic Voyage' Or 'Frankenstein' Next SpringExclusive: Director Shawn Levy is still two weeks away from the release of his robot boxing movie, “Real Steel,” but development work has already begun on a sequel. It’s a show of faith from DreamWorks and producer Steven Spielberg.
17

Casting Will Decide Whether The Director Shoots 'Fantastic Voyage' Or 'Frankenstein' Next Spring



Exclusive: Director Shawn Levy is still two weeks away from the release of his robot boxing movie, “Real Steel,” but development work has already begun on a sequel. It’s a show of faith from DreamWorks and producer Steven Spielberg.

“Yes, well, the studio’s faith is very strong,” Levy told The Playlist during a recent interview in Los Angeles. “Even 'Night at the Museum' didn’t test like this. People were cheering in a movie theater. The last time I remember that happening was in 'Rocky III' with Clubber Lang or even against Drago in 'Rocky IV.' So we got that kind of visceral reaction from audiences and the studio not only took the bullish move of developing a sequel and asking me to sign on but then also didn’t deny it when it leaked in the press. That was a show of confidence that hopefully we will reward.”

Levy also confirmed to Playlist that he is signed on to direct the sequel and that the principal cast members will reprise their roles. “I will produce and direct again, yeah. Hugh’s definitely in and, certainly, I can’t give away too much, but Dakota [Goyo], Evangeline [Lilly] and Hugh [Jackman] are all a big part of the sequel. It is the same characters, the next chapter. It delves into the fallout of the new fame and money that the Kentons are going to have as a result of Zeus-Atom fight. It also delves into something I thought was a cool aspect of the movie that I didn’t have time to get into, which is the class warfare between the underground unsanctioned world of robot boxing and the monetized corporately funded league. The truth is, it’s not unlike the way boxing saw its popularity contested with the rise of a more violent, less rule-bound MMA.”


We asked Levy how quickly the studio would green light the sequel and whether it could jump ahead of previously announced projects “Frankenstein” and “Fantastic Voyage.” “I don’t think it can,” admits Levy. “I think 'Real Steel' will open strong, but I think it’s going to run stronger. There’s only so much you can tell about this movie in a commercial. The movie reveals itself as a whole. So, in the same way that 'Date Night' and 'Night at the Museum' did not open massive, it will be the legs. I’ve been lucky with the legs in my movies and I think 'Real Steel' can have that. So it wouldn’t be the Monday after opening weekend. It’s gonna be a month. It will be November before we know. But Hugh is on 'Les Miserables' at least into early summer and quite possibly right into 'Wolvy' after that. I need to wait and see what shakes out with Hugh’s schedule and mine. But we are both committed to the sequel if this movie is a hit.”

The rumored budget for the first movie was only $80 million, a surprisingly low number for this level of scope and visual effects. Levy expects that budget to rise for part two. “Generally that holds true,” Levy laughs. “I’m not complaining. I had enough this time, but I want to blow things out. The robot design in the sequel are less anthropomorphic and a little more trippy."

When asked about those other two rather large projects Levy is tied to, “Frankenstein” and “Fantastic Voyage,” the director seemed to steer the conversation towards the latter, which was surprising considering the recent rumors that he and 'Voyage' producer James Cameron disagreed on the necessity of an A-lister in the lead role. “That was an internet rumor. The truth is that it’s a very expensive movie. I have always felt that I want a certain heft to the casting of 'Fan Voyage.' Jim hasn’t really weighed in strongly for or against other than to say, ‘Whatever you want to make it work, that’s what we’re going to try to make happen.’ So no one ever said, ‘Let’s make it with nobody.’ It was me who said I want to make it with someone of note. Because I think it’s a familiar title and it’s certainly an unbelievably cool science fiction/action movie underwater in 3D. It’s got a lot going for it. There’s a few actors in my mind that are of the bigger star ilk and I’m leaning that way.”

“I love both movies. I’m pretty sure I’m going to make one of them this spring," Levy continued about what his next project will be. "I can’t tell you with certainty which. But I have awesome scripts on both, awesome collaborators on both. It’s a matter of the right actors being available in the right moment.”

“Real Steel” opens in theaters nationwide on October 7th.

This article is related to: Actors, Films, Shawn Levy, Fantastic Voyage, Real Steel, Genre Films, Hugh Jackman, Frankenstein


The Playlist

The obsessives' guide to contemporary cinema via film discussion, news, reviews, features, nostalgia, movie music, soundtracks, DVDs and more.


E-Mail Updates