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Night at the Museum director now has Real Steel
Posted by Patrick Sauriol on Wednesday, September 16, 2009
Real Steel, a futuristic movie about robots boxing each other when the sport has been outlawed for humans, has lost a director but gained another director. The man who has left the project is Peter Berg, director of Hancock and The Kingdom. He just signed on the dotted line to deliver Universal its Battleship movie for July 1, 2011. Put another way, Berg chose to go make a movie based on a well-known board game instead of a copycat of Rock'Em Sock'Em Robots. Only in Hollywood could a man who makes millions of dollars be forced to make this kind of choice, right?
The new director attached to DreamWorks' Real Steel is Shawn Levy, the guy that brought us the two Night at the Museum films. The difference between the kind of film that Berg makes versus the kind of picture that Levy does is pretty evident if you've seen some of their work. It's a point that's brought up as well in the Reporter's article about the changing of directors; Levy's films are always more in line with mainstream humor and that same sort of take will likely be found in his version of the project.
The project has been in development at DreamWorks for a couple of years and gone through various drafts, with the latest writer assigned to it being John Gatins (Coach Carter, Dreamer). Real Steel's two main characters are an estranged father and son, which gives Gatins familiar material to work his writing magic on. The father comes to train his offspring how to properly control his robot fighter so that he has a shot at greatness, kind of like a Rocky V but with robots. Sorta.
DreamWorks took this one with them when they split from Paramount and it has Steven Spielberg and Robert Zemeckis involved as executive producers. That means if those two heavyweights see some potential here in the project, no matter what the logline sounds like to us, there's likely some gold in the ore to mine from it.
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