Earlier this month, we learned that Ashton Kutcher was poised to play the late Apple co-founder Steve Jobs in an indie biopic. The news made sense for some reasons (the physical similarities), but came as a bit of a surprise for other reasons (he’s Ashton Kutcher). At the time we didn’t really know much about the project beyond the fact that Joshua Michael Stern (Swing Vote) is directing, and the film, going by the terrible working title Jobs: Get Inspired, will chronicle the innovator’s life “from a wayward hippie to co-founder of Apple.”
Now producer Mark Hulme has spilled a few details about the project, including how they feel about Sony’s competing Jobs biopic and why they think Kutcher is their man to play the lead role. Hit the jump to see what he had to say.
During an interview with Neowin (via /Film), Hulme revealed that Jobs will primarily focus on the early years of Apple, “its founding and the up and down years: 1971-2000.” They’re pulling from a variety of sources for their research, and Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak, former Apple CEOs John Skully and Mike Markkula, and early Apple employee Daniel Kottke are all characters that will factor into the film. As for the casting of Kutcher, Hulme had this to say:
“Since our film covers the early years of Apple, when Jobs was in his 20′s, we needed an actor who could carry not only the youthfulness of Jobs at the time but also the psychological complexity. Because of that, and Ashton’s physical similarities to Jobs, he’s perfect for our film… When Ashton read the script he was immediately attracted to the project. He is a Steve Jobs and Apple fan, and is technologically savvy, as well, so he recognized the historical importance of Steve Jobs and the potential of the project. He is very excited to have the role.”
Hulme revealed that they began researching and writing the screenplay immediately after Jobs’ retirement was announced as a result of the enormous impact the news had on Hulme’s staff. As such, they’re much further ahead than Sony’s competing project:
“Sony is a highly respected company, and Isaacson’s book is a great read. But our project was in development even before the release of Isaacson’s book and our movie will be out well before their movie.”
The plan is to release the film during the fourth quarter of this year, and distribution deals are currently in the works. I’m not exactly wild about Kutcher playing Jobs, but I’d love nothing more than to be pleasantly surprised by a wonderful performance. Luckily we don’t have to wait very long to find out how Jobs: Get Inspired comes together given how quickly things are moving forward.