Hollywood actor Hugh Jackman last stepped into a fighting ring for a short scene in X-Men as Wolverine aka Logan. This time, in the Steven Spielberg production Real Steel, he’s close to the ring again, but only standing in the corner, cheering on his fighter, who just so happens to be an eight-foot tall robot. “I was lucky I didn’t have to fight them, they were way too heavy and huge, and would land me in the hospital with just one punch,” he says,
“The kind of fighting I did in this film is very different from what I did in X-Men. For this, I was trained by Sugar Ray Leonard,” says Jackman, who plays Charlie Kenton in the Shawn Levy film that hits theatres tomorrow.
The legendary American boxer spent days with Jackman, training him on the job of the corner man, which most people underestimate. Though in this case, the actor found it harder as he was giving a pep talk to a machine.
“He told me I didn’t realise how important the corner man is. Sugar used to hire Angelo Dundee (American corner man) for the last weeks leading up to a fight, because he knew how to talk to him. There’s nothing worse than getting a corner man who doesn’t know how to motivate you. The connection cannot be broken at any point. And that’s something I hadn’t focused on,” says the Australian actor. The film revolves around Kenton’s effort to bring a discarded robot back to rule the ring.
On his last visit to India in March this year, Jackman enthralled audiences at the FICCI Frames conference with his wit and hilarious
Apart from dancing, joking, and taking digs at Shah Rukh Khan, the actor made sure he expressed his desire to work in a Hindi film. However, he hasn’t been approached with anything worth bringing him back here yet.
“I would love to return at any opportunity and work in a Bollywood film, but nothing has materialised yet,” he says, adding that even though he visited quite a few places in India, he “simply loves Jaipur”.