Hugh Jackman: My son loves 'Real Steel story

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PHOENIX – Actor Hugh Jackman could be looking at his biggest movie ever this week. It’s called “Real Steel,” and while it looks like Rock ‘em Sock ‘em Robots meets “Rocky,” director Shawn Levy and Jackman insist it’s a sci-fi movie the whole family will love.

With a rating of PG-13, “Real Steel” is geared toward families with older kids, but it’s not just for the boys.

Levy ("Night at the Museum," "Date Night," Cheaper by the Dozen") spent two years working on the movie, and he said he wanted to make sure it was something women would enjoy as much as the boys.

“I knew what I wanted to do was something unexpected,” Levy explained. “I wanted a movie that would be great action, and yes, a robot-boxing movie that boys would lose their minds over. But I wanted a real human story, a real underdog story that would be moving where actually, by the end of the movie, you care what’s going on in the ring.”

That human underdog story was attractive to Jackman ("X-Men" movies and "The Prestige"). He has two kids, including a young son, who was a little scared of Wolverine, the X-Men character for which Jackman is known.

Just to see how he would react, Jackman read the script to his little boy.

“I wanted to see if the story played without the visuals,” Jackman explained. “He made me read it to him every night for 10 nights. He was so into it.”

That excitement carried over to when he actually saw the movie. “He was so invested in it,” Jackman said. “He has all the toys and he sleeps with them.”

Jackman’s coolness factor shot up with his own father, who was a boxer, when he told him boxing great Sugar Ray Leonard was his trainer and adviser for the movie.

“Real Steel,” which also stars Evangeline Lilly (“Lost”), opens Friday.