There has been quite a bit of concern voiced since the announcement that Ashton Kutcher would play Steve Jobs, the iconic Apple founder, in a biopic titled Steve Jobs: Get Inspired.
It’s not exactly shocking to see the concern either, Jobs still remains a delicate topic since his recent passing and of course, there is a precedent for this type of reaction – valid or not. Jennifer Lopez received considerable protest when cast as Selena, a role that quite possibly changed her career permanently and led her out of relative obscurity and into superstardom.
Though Kutcher is already an A-List celebrity, he’s failed to transition to more serious roles. That could change though should he succeed at portraying the iconic Steve Jobs.
Despite the backlash and concern, producer Mark Hulme defended the decision to cast Kutcher, saying:
“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.”
The biopic will cover the years from 1971-2000. It will include the founding and rise of the Apple conglomerate and development of technology that has changed the world, even before the invention of the iPod.
Casting for the film is still underway with several key roles still available: Apple co-founder, Steve Wozniak; former Apple CEOs, John Scully and Mike Markkula; and early Apple employee, Daniel Kottke. Hulme says that they are in talks with some well known actors to take on the remaining roles but nothing more is known at this point.
Sony has announced plans for a Jobs biopic as well but Steve Jobs: Get Inspired is likely to win the race to theaters. The films is scheduled to shoot in May with a possible late 2012 release.