Steve Jobs film is wrong, says Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak

PUBLISHED : Sunday, 27 January, 2013, 12:00am
UPDATED : Sunday, 27 January, 2013, 5:08am


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Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak questioned the accuracy of a film about Steve Jobs as the movie opened with a red carpet premiere, while its makers stressed it was not a documentary.

Wozniak said the movie jOBS - which opened at the Sundance Film Festival on Friday - erred in its depiction of characters as well as the relationships between them, especially the one between him and computer icon Jobs.

"We never had such interaction and roles," Wozniak, who quit Apple in 1987 after 12 years, told tech blog Gizmodo after a clip from the movie was posted online ahead of its premiere. "I'm not even sure what it's getting at," he said, adding that the "personalities are very wrong - although mine is closer."

"The ideas of computers affecting society did not come from Jobs. They inspired me and were widely spoken about at the Homebrew Computer Club," said Wozniak, referring to a hobby group to which they belonged.

The film, one of two about the Apple founder who died in 2011, opens in the US in April. The second, which has no release date yet, is based on Jobs' biography published by Walter Isaacson shortly after his death.

Directed by Joshua Michael Stern and starring Two and a Half Men actor Ashton Kutcher, jOBS tells the story of the icon's ascension from college dropout to one of the 20th century's most revered creative entrepreneurs.

"Steve came back from Oregon and came to a club meeting and didn't start talking about this great social impact," said Wozniak, referring to the period in the 1970s before Silicon Valley took off. "His idea was to make a US$20 PC board and sell it for US$40 to help people at the club build the computer I'd given away. Steve came from selling surplus parts at HalTed - he always saw a way to make a quick buck off my designs," he said.

"The lofty talk came much further down the line ... I never looked like a professional. We were both kids."

The film's producers, in response to Wozniak's comments, were cited by Entertainment Weekly as saying: "The film is not a documentary, nor is it meant to be a blow-by-blow, word-for-word account of all conversations and events.

"The filmmakers have tremendous admiration and respect for Wozniak and all those that are portrayed in the film, and did extensive research in an effort to make an entertaining accurate film that captures the essence and story of Steve Jobs and those that built Apple with him."

But the producers did acknowledge that "not every single thing in the film is a precise representation of what took place".

Wozniak, who made his criticism after seeing just one short clip before the film's premiere, said inaccuracy did not necessarily mean the film was bad. "The movie should be very popular and I hope it's entertaining. It may be very correct, as well. This is only one clip," he said.