real life

"I just want to make Dad proud."

Robert Irwin talks about following in dad’s footsteps.

While acting might run in the family, Robert Irwin is adamant he’ll uphold the legacy of his famous father – the late Australian conservationist Steve Irwin – and devote his life to working with and protecting animals.

“I’ll always love conservation and wildlife. I don’t think one day I’ll wake up and say, ‘That’s it, I’m done saving the world. I’m going to become an astronaut’,” the 11-year-old said on Nine’s Mornings on Friday.

“I think my whole life I’m going to continue in carrying on in his [Steve Irwin’s] footsteps and try and make him proud.”

"I think my whole life I’m going to continue in carrying on in his [Steve Irwin's] footsteps and try and make him proud."
And just like his famous dad Robert has also taken to Hollywood, lending his voice to playful Kyle the Seagull in movie The SpongeBob Movie: Sponge Out of Water. He plays a furry sidekick to wicked pirate Burger Beard, voiced by Antonio Banderas.

Robert, who lost his dad in a tragic stingray accident in 2006, said he loved voicing the mischievous seagull and saw a little bit of himself in the character.

"One of the most amazing things about animation is that no matter what happens to you, you can get blown up, struck by lightning, fall off a cliff but then in the next scene you’re completely fine again. I wish I had that ability," he said.

Robert with big sister Bindi and mum Terri (via Instagram).

Acting has run strong in the animal-loving family.

While dad Steve played elephant seal Trev in 2006 popular animated movie Happy Feet, big sister Bindi Irwin, 16, starred in the 2010 movie Free Willy: Escape from Pirate's Cove and also in 2013 film Return to Nim's Island.

The SpongeBob Movie: Sponge Out of Water, sequel to the 2004 hit, premières in Australia on 2 April.

SCROLL THROUGH the gallery for more photos of Robert and his family

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