The highly-anticipated biopic Steve Jobs is scheduled to be released later this month, and The Wall Street Journal reports that Jobs’ widow, Laurene Powell Jobs, and a group of “allies” attempted to shut down the film before its release.
Going so far back as to when it was in the hands of Sony, she lobbied the various production companies the script passed through — ending with the movie’s distributor, Universal Pictures — in attempts to prevent its eventual release.
The report describes the group’s objection to the movie as saying the film depicted Jobs as “cruel and inhumane,” while downplaying his accomplishments, due to its preference for entertainment over accuracy.
Jobs’ close friend, Bill Campbell is among those that are speaking out against the film:
“A whole generation is going to think of him in a different way if they see a movie that depicts him in a negative way,” said Campbell, a longtime Apple board member and friend of Mr. Jobs. Mr. Campbell hasn’t seen the film.
“If they want to make a drama, they shouldn’t do it at somebody else’s expense,” said Mr. Campbell. “He’s not there to defend himself.”
Apple CEO Tim Cook spoke out against the film and other biographical projects about Jobs, saying they were “opportunistic.” Cook’s remarks sparked a bit of a feud, as screenwriter Aaron Sorkin objected to Cook’s remarks, saying “… if you’ve got a factory full of children in China assembling phones for 17 cents an hour you’ve got a lot of nerve calling someone else opportunistic.” Sorkin later apologized for his remarks.
Jobs’ widow, Laurene Powell Jobs, was reportedly offered a chance to be included in the film’s production, and to be on set, but her disdain for the Walter Isaacson biography – which the biopic is based on – led her to refuse the offer. Powell Jobs also has reportedly not yet seen the film, declining an offer for an advanced showing, under a non-disclosure agreement.
Not all of Jobs’ former colleagues are against the film. Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak, who was a paid consultant on the film, says he believes the filmmakers “did a great job.”