Steve Jobs opens this week and is already being held in high acclaim, but for a long while the film's production was in complete disarray. In a new report on how the film came to be made, The Hollywood Reporter suggests that some of the trouble came from Laurene Powell Jobs, Steve's widow, who petitioned against having the film made. She's reported to have even called up Christian Bale and Leonardo DiCaprio — both of whom were briefly attached to play Steve — to dissuade them from participating in the film.
"Laurene Jobs has been trying to kill this movie, okay?"
"Since the very beginning, Laurene Jobs has been trying to kill this movie, okay?" someone close to the film tells the Reporter. "Laurene Jobs called Leo DiCaprio and said, 'Don't do it.' Laurene Jobs called Christian Bale and said, 'Don't [do it].'"
Though the Reporter couldn't confirm those accounts with either actor, a Sony executive was willing to confirm that she very much did not want the movie to be made. "My understanding is, she did call one or two of the actors," the executive says. She apparently lobbied each of the major studios not to make it, too.
Similar details were previously reported by The Wall Street Journal, which said that Powell Jobs repeatedly tried to kill the film. The reported reason is that Powell Jobs isn't a fan of the book it's based on, Walter Isaacson's official biography of Steve. She "continued to say how much she disliked the book, and that any movie based on the book could not possibly be accurate," producer Scott Rudin tells the Journal.
Powell Jobs' only involvement in the film seems to have been trying to stop it from happening. Although, if her calls with Bale and DiCaprio were part of what turned them away, perhaps she did have a meaningful impact on who ultimately wound up playing Steve.