Exclusive: Evangeline Lilly

Mimi ON Oct 11, 2011 AT 12:49 pm

Evangeline Lilly at the Real Steel premiere

Evangeline Lilly at the Real Steel premiere

We’ve managed to get an exclusive interview with the lovely Evangeline Lilly (Lost) for her new film with Hugh Jackman, Real Steel.

Lilly stars as Hugh Jackman’s love interest, Bailey, in the film which is a “gritty, white-knuckle, action ride” all about high tech boxing. Although the film is set in the future (2020) and involves boxing robots, we’ve seen it here at BATD HQ and it’s actually a far more emotional than you might think as Jackman’s character attempts to get closer to his estranged son, Max. The fight scenes are amazing but it’s definitely the emotional involvement we loved… Oh, and Hugh Jackman topless. That was nice.

Read our interview with Evangeline Lilly below and see what she thinks about acting alongside Hugh Jackman, robot fighting and why she thinks you should go and see it!

Q: Can you tell me how you got involved in the project?

A: I received a script from my agent and was told immediately that Hugh Jackman was attached. At that point I was in my last month or two of shooting “Lost” and not looking for work at all.  I was excited to be done and get some time to myself, but since Hugh Jackman was attached to the script, I decided to read it. I always wanted to work with him ever since I saw him in a movie called “The Fountain by Darren Aronofsky.  He starred in the film and completely ruled the part.

I’ve always said, even though I was on one of the biggest sci-fi television shows, I’m not a sci-fi person. But again, by virtue of the fact that Hugh was attached, I kept reading; I kept going through and by the time I finished reading the script, I was so moved and so touched. It was so heartfelt and well written.

Q:  When you hear, ‘robot boxing’ you get a certain image in your head but it’s more than that, correct?

A: Robot boxing immediately made me think this movie will not interest me at all because I thought it would be about gadgets and special effects and about how cool the robots could be.

But the movie’s core is about a father/son relationship and the healing that needs to happen there, and the healing that really needs to happen ultimately within Hugh’s character, Charlie Kenton. And the robots are a fabulous backdrop for this really heartfelt story.

Hugh Jackman and Evangeline Lilly in Real Steel

Hugh Jackman and Evangeline Lilly in Real Steel

Q: When does this movie take place and what has changed in the world between now and then?

A: The movie takes place in the near future in 2020. The world of boxing has evolved because the fans demanded more action, more violence, more blood and more sensationalised fighting.

The same way that it has in our present-day world.  It used to be two men sparring in a ring and now we have the extreme fighters who can pretty much do anything they want to each other without limit. We have the WWF, which we all know has sensationalised actors, but it is all based on the fact that audiences want to see more carnage.

They are bloodthirsty and they want more and more, so it reaches a point where humans can no longer satiate the need and the desire for violence. So they turn over boxing to robots and that way they can have fights to the death. In my opinion, it’s not even that farfetched a notion, considering what we show in our media nowadays.

Hugh Jackman and Evangeline Lilly at the premiere

Hugh Jackman and Evangeline Lilly at the premiere

Q: Can you talk about what it’s like working with your co-stars?

A: I admired Hugh’s work in “The Fountain and wanted to work with him, so he was a big part of the reason I decided to look at the script in the first place and then chose to do the film. He has not disappointed; he has been an absolute treat to work with.

When the camera rolls, Hugh’s always coming up with adlib lines or a new angle on what the scene could be or he’ll start physically playing with me, which is so helpful to snap me out of the mode of acting and into the spontaneity of living a scene. I find myself at the end of the day, instead of being exhausted, feeling energized because we’ve just played. We just played house like little kids do and it was so much fun. I think that that is a credit to both Hugh and Shawn Levy who gives us the space and ultimate freedom to do whatever we want.

Dakota (Goyo) is an anomaly.  You meet a lot of kids in this industry who are very into themselves, with adults at their beck and call every second of the day. But Dakota’s not the kind of kid that seems to let that go to his head or affect his ability to be childlike.

Q: How would you describe the audience for this film?

A: There’s adventure; there’s a relationship between a father and his son; there’s a relationship between a boy and his robot. It covers the gamut. There’s really no one that will be alienated as an audience for this film.

Q: Is there anything that you are excited to see in the final film?

A: I’m really excited to see the final fight. That last fight is when all the stakes are highest. Everything rests on this one fight and everyone has struggled to come together for this one moment. I’m really looking forward to seeing it on screen.

Watch the trailer below:

Real Steel hits cinemas on 14th October 2011.

©DreamWorks II Dist

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