When it was first announced that Ashton Kutcher had been cast to play late Apple CEO Steve Jobs, everyone with any affinity for the company let out a stifled gasp of shock. Kutcher is alternately most famous for playing a moron on That ’70s Show and marrying a much older Demi Moore, whereas Jobs rose to prominence due to a keen eye for design and a laser-like focus on what the average person truly desires from the objects he or she uses on a daily basis. The two men are wildly disparate, and it seemed as if the only basis for the casting decision was the fact that Kutcher bears an uncanny resemblance to a young Jobs, circa the era in which he helped found Apple.
Yesterday’s episode of Entertainment Tonight saw the debut of the first footage from jOBS — yes, that nugget of improper capitalization and poorly thought out attempts to reference Apple’s iconic naming scheme is really the official title of this film — and while we can’t say it will do much to restore anyone’s faith in this movie’s potential, it’s actually not as bad as we’d feared. You’ll find the clip embedded below, and as it’s only a minute-long we urge you to watch the full thing.
Done? What’d you think? Obviously seeing Kutcher in anything instantly brings to mind all of the goofy, punchably smirk-filled roles he’s taken in the past, but we will say in Kutcher’s defense that he seems to have gone to great lengths to tone down the stereotypical alpha male schtick that has been his go-to Hollywood persona for so many years. Likewise, he seems to have an apropos familiarity with technology and while he lacks the borderline messianic charisma of the actual Steve Jobs, Hollywood could certainly do much worse in selecting a passable analogue for a posthumous biopic.
Then again, this Steve Jobs biography is only one of two in the works. The other is being written by Aaron Sorkin, creator of Sports Night and The West Wing, and seems a much more high profile project than jOBS. Sony is producing that film and from what we gather hopes it to be an important, Oscar-contending sort of movie. While we know little of Sony’s Steve Jobs biography at the moment, we will bring you more as it emerges.
Barring catastrophe, jOBS will reach theaters on April 19, a date that more or less marks the 37th anniversary of the founding of Apple. If we want to be perfectly accurate the company was founded on April 1 and incorporated on April 3, 1979, but for whatever reason jOBS just can’t be released on those dates. Much like the rest of jOBS, it seems like the film’s release date will be a case of “not perfect, but good enough.”