Several weeks ago, the news broke that Richard Matheson's story story Real Steel was getting the blockbuster treatment courtesy of producer Steven Spielberg and director Shawn Levy, with Hugh Jackman the front-runner for the lead role. Today, Variety is reporting that the project has been greenlit by Dreamworks with an $80 million price tag and a June 2010 start date.
The story follows a former boxer living in a futuristic world where massive robots duke it out in the ring instead of human beings. Naturally, he comes across an underdog robot who he can train to be the best and finds out about the 11-year-old son he never knew he had. Various forms of bonding ensue. The story was previously a mediocre Twilight Zone episode starring Lee Marvin. The robots looked like walking wax figures there, so I expect we'll be getting a Transformers-esque update in that department.
This is Dreamworks' first film since securing new financing and I can see why they picked it. People like Rocky and people like Transformers and people like Hugh Jackman, and Shawn Levy tends to make movies that make a tidy profit.