In real life, Dakota Goyo is a 12 year old boy who’s also wise beyond his years.
I got a chance to talk to him in a group interview this week and honestly, Dakota speaks better than I do as a girl in her 30s in a group setting!
At 12 years old, Dakota already has quite an accomplished resume having appeared alongside Samuel L. Jackson in Resurrecting the Champ (another boxing movie), Woody Harrelson in Defendor and Anthony Hopkins in Thor.
In Real Steel, Dakota plays the part of Max, who has just lost his mother and is being returned to his estranged deadbeat dad, robot boxing promoter Charlie (Hugh Jackman), who left when Max was a baby. The pair find an unlikely commonground in robot boxing and the adventure ensues. (You can check out my full review of Real Steel here at 5 Minutes for Mom.)
In our interview, Dakota opens up about the movie, working with Hugh Jackman and robots, dancing for the first time and how he stays grounded as a kid.
What drew you to the part of Max and the movie Real Steel?
“What drew me to the movie was definitely the robots, I mean real 9 foot tall robots that are functional are a kid’s dream and also meeting not Wolverine — the guy, Hugh Jackman, the nicest guy in the universe, just getting to meet him was unbelieveable.
Dakota had some pretty sweet dance moves in the movie, in fact, dancing with Atom, the robot, was one of his favorite parts of the movie.
Did you come up with those dance moves yourself?
“I never tried to dance before the film so I never really knew I could dance, and then our choreographer Ann Fletcher, she kind of taught me the moves I never knew that I could do, and we had like 20 minutes a day for 3 days to learn a two minute routine, so it wasn’t a very long time. It sounds like a long time but it was only like an hour to learn a 2 minute routine, getting to learn those moves from ann, I mean, I’ve been doing those moves and Ive been dancing ever since.”
Without spoiling the film, there is a scene where I was at the edge of my seat when Dakota takes an unexpected spill.
Were you really scared when you were filming the scene where you fell off the cliff?
“No but my mom was! I mean, I love doing my own stunts, I mean just getting that adrenaline rush. At first, it’s obviously a little scary because I mean it’s like a 60 foot hill that I had to slide down a harness and then there’s like a huge drop at the end but then, all of the water and mud was probably the worst part because I really don’t like to get dirty but I had to go through it obviously and just seeing my mom’s reaction was priceless, she didn’t like me doing the stunts but I really enjoyed it.”
Did you really drink all those Dr. Peppers on set?
“I did drink all those sodas on set but they were not Dr. Peppers, they were Diet Coke, because I would have had way too much energy.”
How do you stay grounded with your family and friends?
“They give me a lot of support but what I really like is they keep me grounded obviously by living in my home town and not moving to LA. And staying with my friends, they don’t always tell me “Oh my gosh, you’re so good,” and I appreciate that because I don’t want to be like “Oh my gosh I’m at the top,” Dakota said. “ When people keep on telling me you should be better, you gotta fix this, it’s always something that I have to work for.”
Which is an incredibly insightful answer for a 12-year-old.
Go see Real Steel, it is out in theaters now!
Oh and guess what? There is a giveaway involved here!
- REAL STEEL t-shirt in adult sizes of S, M, L, XL
- REAL STEEL bottle opener (for coca cola/slash/mommy timeouts)
- REAL STEEL stickers
- REAL STEEL temporary tattoos
All you have to do is leave a comment below to be entered!
- For an additional entry, retweet this giveaway using the hashtag #realsteel
That is all!
Contest ends next Friday, October 14th at 11:59 p.m. ET and a winner will be announced on Saturday.
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