The Cast and Creators of 'Steve Jobs' on Their Rule-Breaking Biopic

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Gwynne Watkins
·Writer, Yahoo Entertainment
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Most biopics follow a certain formula — but in the Jobs-ian spirit of innovation, Steve Jobs invents its own. Written by Aaron Sorkin, the drama about the late Apple founder takes place in three acts, each taking place right before Jobs unveiled one of his game-changing personal computers: the Macintosh, and NeXT computer, and the iMac. Yahoo Movies talked to the cast and crew — including stars Michael Fassbender and Seth Rogen, director Danny Boyle, and writer Sorkin — about how their unusual biopic came together. Watch the video above.

“When I started out, I didn’t know what I was going to do,” Sorkin admitted to Yahoo Movies. “All I knew was what I didn’t want to do, and that was, I didn’t want to write a biopic. And then I had this notion: I like claustrophobic spaces, I like compressed periods of time when there’s a ticking clock, and I like being behind the scenes — in this case, literally behind the scenes at a theater. So if I could put them all in the minutes leading up to one of his product launches, when they’re all backstage, then maybe I’ll have done something different, and maybe that thing will be good.”

Boyle praised Sorkin’s approach of “shining a spotlight so intensely on a realtime 40 minutes,” while co-star Michael Stuhlbarg noted that the film could have easily been a stage play. “We wanted to do that desperately,” Stuhlbarg said of the cast. Added Seth Rogen, “We rehearsed for a few weeks before each act. It was amazing.”

While Steve Jobs was ahead of his time, the movie is filled with the technology of the recent past — which confused one young cast member. “One of the girls playing his daughter, she has a Walkman on the whole time as part of her thing in the movie,” said Rogen, “and we were filming a scene one day and she just turns to me and she goes, ‘What is this?’ I’m like, ’It’s a Walkman.’ She’s like, ‘What does it do?’ It was like, ‘It plays music!’”

Steve Jobs is now playing in New York and LA, and will expand to select theaters on Friday. The film goes into wide release on October 23.