A quick glance at Evangeline Lilly’s IMDb page reveals a filmography that’s surprisingly short on quantity. But look at what is there: a groundbreaking and beloved TV series (Lost), a Best Picture winner (The Hurt Locker), and, oh, a tiny two-movie project known as The Hobbit.
Last year, Lilly starred in the robot-boxing family film Real Steel, which earned nearly $300 million worldwide and received an Oscar nomination yesterday for its motion-capture visual effects. She played Bailey, the former girlfriend of Charlie (Hugh Jackman) who now owns the boxing gym he frequently visits.
EW recently checked in with Lilly to chat about Real Steel, which debuted on Blu-ray and DVD this week. Click through to read the interview, in which Lilly discusses why she signed up for the role, what it was like working aside animatronic machines, and her upcoming role as a kickass warrior elf in The Hobbit.
ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY: What was it about Real Steel that attracted you to the project?
EVANGELINE LILLY: When I first read the script, I read it because after I saw the gorgeous Darren Aronofsky film The Fountain, I said, “I would love the opportunity to work with Hugh Jackman.” His performance in that film was flawless. So I got the script for Real Steel. I started reading and saw that it was about robot boxing, and I was immediately turned off. It’s not my thing. But I continued on, and by the time I got to the end of the script, I had chicken skin and tears in my eyes. I thought, “Man, we don’t make movies like this anymore.” It’s just innocent and unjaded and uncynical. It reminded me of the movies I would watch when I was a kid, like E.T. and Rocky.Another thing, which I probably shouldn’t admit, is that after working six years in a row on Lost, I was not looking for a major commitment. Real Steel was this lovely little piece where I held a cup of coffee and talked to Hugh Jackman for three weeks. And that sounded kind of nice.
Hello fellow Evangeline fans! During all the “Real Steel” promotion a few weeks back, I accidentally forgot to add photos from two events Evangeline attented. The first batch contains photos of Evangeline at “Jimmy Kimmel Live” on October the 4th, while the other set are from a Hero Complex Special Screening Of “Real Steel”. Evi looked absolutely terrific at both events! The special screening photos are one of my favorite set this year. They truely show why I love Evangeline – unlike many other female celebrities these days who’s always obsessing to look perfect, act perfect and seem perfect, Evi is always 100% herself. And she clearly loves to goof around!
Enjoy these new gallery additions, and stay tuned for another candids batch very soon (once again thanks to the lovely Milla), and the graphic post I promised you in my previous post – sorry about that, I have the memory of a gold fish these days.
Real Steel is generic, it’s clichéd, it’s formulaic but most importantly it works. Real Steel takes the premise of the once-titanic children’s toy – Rock ‘em Sock ‘em Robots – and brings it to life. Unlike something like The Transformers, there wasn’t an established ‘story’ with ‘Rock ‘em Sock ‘em Robots’ – other than the obvious. So without any qualms about being anything else, we’re presented with a great underdog story mashed with a reunion story of an estranged father and son and the whimsical childhood fantasy of “how cool would it be if Rock ‘em Sock ‘em Robots were REAL?’
Jackman plays down on his luck former boxer/robot fight coach Charlie, who blackmails his former spouse’s sister for the rights to adopt his estranged son in the wake of her death- in order for him to finance his Robot fight coaching career. With that kind of CV you’d expect that he’s an unlikeable creep – but Jackman’s charm and personality shines through. Max played by Dakota Goyo is a brash and stubborn 9 year old who happens to be a wunderkind with Robo-technology. He’s an aspirational kid for the kids in the audience – assertive beyond his years, talking up his robots fighting prowess at every turn. Before I get to Atom, Goyo’s Max (because of his look) does have shades of Jake Lloyd’s “[M]Anakin Skywalker,” which is really tough in a few wince-worthy moments but the film is strong enough to overcome that.
The rest of the characters portrayed don’t really get the screen time to offer any real substance because the focus of the film is on the relationship between Max and Charlie. Bailey (Lilley) does give some humanity and back-story to how Charlie arrived at the Charlie in the film, while portraying the ‘Adrian!’-esque love interest but the other peripheral characters feel like 2D caricatures for the sake of the core relationship.
Now onto the titular robot, Atom, who is an interesting and ambiguous robot. He’s an early model, with long since forgotten functions – he’s shaped more like a metallic boxer that his modern counterparts with epic mech warrior proportions. There are some slight and subtle moments where Max (Goyo) appears convinced that he’s found something more with Atom than a regular robot. His implied ‘difference’ is the potential that he’s got some kind of AI. However I will concede that the whispers/hints from Atom that he’s got A.I could just be my fear of Skynet talking; but nevertheless it’s a nice added dimension in the interaction between the two, especially when they’re alone.
And finally, it would be remiss of me to not talk about director Shawn Levy, who does an accomplished job of contrasting the futuristic fighting arena engulfed in technology with the beautiful and iconic American countryside. The sunset hues of the landscape are idealistic and natural, compared to the fluorescent led of the fight arenas really showcase the film’s nostalgic impression of the future. The robo-fighting action in Real Steel does not feel stale like Transformers, where at times you feel like you’re watching a cut scene from a really expensive video game. The action is exciting because you’re seeing the human interaction determining the robot’s fate. The human robot interaction makes it engaging and interesting and has you rooting for Atom’s underdog fighting bot throughout.
Does Real Steel have flaws? Yes, but this is just the kind of entertaining escapist fare that let’s you look over the basic problems with the script/acting/story and just enjoy feeling like an 11 year old controlling awesome fighting bots. And further I feel that it’s the logical transition for a competitive gamer to want have a high stakes competition against other gamers at their favourite game. Has anyone heard the following? “Who wants to bet money on this game of COD: Black Ops or Madden or Gears of War?”
Real Steel is real fun – get your bot in the ring!
To celebrate Evangeline’s new film “Real Steel“, I’ve put togheter a little update for y’all releated to the film! First up, I’ve added 12 stunning high quality movie stills to our galleries. Evangeline looks breathtaking – I’m so exited for the film!
Secondly, I’ve added 11 new Real Steel icons into our iconarchives here. I’m a bit unsure about the coloring on these, but hopefully some of you will enjoy and use them! Don’t hesitate to let me know what you think about these – I would love to hear your opinions. Now, enjoy the update, and come back a little later for another update!
8 Oct 2011
New article: Evangeline Lilly on femininity and her ‘beautiful’ male co-stars in ‘Real Steel’
On The Red Carpet did a great interview with our Evi at the red carpet of the Real Steel premiere on October the 3rd. They’ve finally released a video clip from the event, as well as a very long and good interview “script”. It’s pretty good, so I truely recommand all Evangeline fans to watch the film, and read the interview 😀 The video itself can be viewed here, and I’ve posted the article below.
Evangeline Lilly plays Hugh Jackman’s love interest in “Real Steel” and the former “Lost” actress talked to OnTheRedCarpet.com about her hunky co-star and her glam red carpet look.
“I actually wore lipstick for the first time in my life, I think,” Lilly, who is a L’Oreal spokes model but has played some less-than-glamorous characters told OnTheRedCarpet.com co-host Rachel Smith. “I decided to be very glam tonight… I have an affinity to femininity.”
The film takes place in 2020, where robots have replaced humans in the boxing ring and Jackman plays a retired boxer turned small-time promoter who sees potential in a discarded robot. In the process of training his new champion, starts sharing a life with his 11-year-old son.
“‘Real Steel’ is projecting into a future where boxing has become mundane to people. As with WWF and all the different fighting styles that have sort of developed and evolved over the last few years, or ten years, people want more action and they want more violence and they want more gore and it reaches a point where a human dies in the ring out of blood thirst, basically — audience blood thirst,” Lilly said of the film. “So they decide to get the humans out of the ring, put the robots into the ring, and then we can have real carnage, to the degree where we have heads hanging on the walls and body parts pulled away off the ring, which obviously you can’t do with humans.”
The film also stars Dakota Goyo as Jackman’s son. Goyo recently portrayed a young Thor in the Marvel comic movie.
“Beautiful men, both of them and both consummate professionals,” Lilly said of Jackman and Goyo. “I was stunned and pleased to see how truly professional Dakota was. He’s clearly an experienced actor because he would come onto set, he would know his lines, he would know how to hit a mark, he would know how to give a variance in performance. He was really good! And then of course Hugh Jackman — everyone has already said all the things I could say which is that he’s humble and kind and generous and professional and so good. He’s just so good!”
At the premiere, Jackman told OnTheRedCarpet.com that he forgot to explain the dynamics of his on-screen kiss with the Lilly to his kids, causing his 11-year-old son Oscar to think the actor had cheated on his wife Deborra-Lee Furness.
“I forgot to tell my boy that he was about to see his dad kiss another woman and explain that experience because it was the first movie of mine that they’ve been to. So literally, the scene came on and I was like, ‘Oh no’ ” Jackman told OnTheRedCarpet.com. ” Oscar just looks straight up and he goes, ‘Wow, Dad, you’re going to be in trouble.'” When asked about the rumors of a “Real Steel” sequel, Lilly said she would love to be a part of another film but also wanted to spend time with her new son.
“I don’t have a choice in the matter, I am contractually on-board,” Lilly admitted. “But because the movie was such a great experience, I don’t see why I wouldn’t want to be a part of another one, other than the fact that I really want to be at home with my baby!”
In May, the actress welcomed her first child with boyfriend Norman Kali. Lilly recently opened up about life with her “wonderful” baby boy. Lilly has yet to reveal the name of her child or the date he was born. She was photographed sporting what appeared to be a baby bump in April.
“My son is wonderful. He is amazing,” the 32-year-old actress told Us Weekly. “Motherhood is a joy! I have dreamed about being a mother since I was 12-years-old and there’s nothing disappointing about it.”
It was announced in June that Lilly nabbed a role in the highly-anticipated film adaptation of “The Hobbit,” directed by Peter Jackson. The actress will be playing a new character, a Woodland Elf named Tauriel.
Her son’s father is Lilly’s boyfriend Kali, who worked as a production assistant on “LOST,” Us Weekly previously reported. The magazine published a celebrity photo of Lilly holding a baby and walking alongside Kali in a supermarket in Hawaii, where much of “LOST” was filmed.
“LOST” debuted in 2004 and depicted a group of people involved in a plane crash, who faced supernatural events on a mysterious island. The Emmy-winning series ended exactly one year ago – on May 23, 2010. Lilly played Kate, a fugitive nicknamed “Freckles” by one of her on-screen love interests, Sawyer, played by Josh Holloway.
Lilly was married to hockey player Murray Hone for a year, after which she dated her “LOST” co-star Dominic Monaghan. Their relationship lasted between 2004 and 2009.
“Real Steel” hit theaters on October 7. Watch the trailer below.
8 Oct 2011
Additional HQ’s from the “Real Steel” premiere added!
Continuing on from the galore of updates here this week, I have now added almost 100 High quality adds to our “Real Steel” premiere album in the galleries! Evangeline looked jaw-droppingly gorgeous at this event, so I went a bit overboard with images. But I’m sure none of you will mind 😉
I have also added three cute shots of Evangeline leaving Jimmy Kimmel Live, which can be found here. Come back a little later for screencaptures and videos of Evi at the show, along with The tonight show with Jay Leno!
3 Oct 2011
80+ HQ photos from the Los Angeles premiere of Real Steel!
As promised in my previous update, I have now added more than 80 hiqh quality images from the Los Angeles premiere of Real Steel to our galleries! The premiere was held at Gibson Amphitheatre in Los Angeles, and Evangeline graced the red carpet in a stunning white dress, matched with a black belt and purse. This is the first public event Evi has attented this year – and she stepped out in style! She looked breathtaking, and the photos are a sure must-see for all fans. There’s not much more to say – enjoy browsing the photos!
Has any of our visitors had the chance to see Real Steel yet? Is so, what’s your thoughts? We here at I heart Evangeline would love to hear your opinions on the film, Evangeline’s role and more!
Hello netters! A brand new clip from Evangeline’s film “Real Steel” has been released. It features Evangeline and Hugh, and it’s a very cute little clip! The video has been added to our video archives, and can be viewed here. Screencaptures can be found in our galleries! Anyone else getting super exited about this film? 😀
Evangeline attented the Los Angeles premiere of Real Steel yesterday. More than 80 high quality images from the event is being uploaded as we speak – so check back in a few minutes for the prettyness…
Hello fellow Evangeline fans! Today, I have a little icon archive update for y’all 🙂 A batch of icons from some of Evi’s films, photoshoots and various events have been added to the site – I hope you’ll all like them! Feel free to come with comments on which styles you would like to see more of, less of etc. I’d love to hear your opinions! Enjoy the new icons, and come back later for more updates.