When you’re casting a movie based on a true story, there are at least three options available to you: 1) hire a great actor that looks exactly like the real life subject (classic example: Johnny Depp in Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas), 2) hire a great actor that looks nothing like the real life subject and hope that the audience doesn’t mind the lack of resemblance (classic example: Anthony Hopkins in Nixon), and 3) hire someone who looks exactly like the real life subject and hope that they’re capable of delivering a good performance.
That third strategy seems to be the route the makers of jOBS have taken. In terms of physical appearance, it makes perfect sense to cast Ashton Kutcher as Steve Jobs. But in terms of acting ability, Kutcher only seems to be capable of playing goofy half-wits, and the few times that Kutcher has strayed from that type of role (The Butterfly Effect, Valentine’s Day, Killers), the results haven’t been pretty. Kutcher makes a convincing Jobs in the above still; would he also make a convincing Jobs when the elements of motion and sound come into play?
Based on the new clip, the answer is no. Despite the uncanny physical resemblance, Kutcher seems hopelessly out of his element. You can tell that he’s trying, but it’s just impossible to accept him as a visionary computer genius. Joseph Gordon-Levitt also looks a bit like Steve Jobs. Was he unavailable?
Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak has seen the new clip, and he isn’t impressed either—although he seems to be more concerned with the fact that the movie portrays him as not recognizing the value or importance of the home computer than with Kutcher being miscast. In an article on Gizmodo, Wozniak has called the clip “totally wrong” and “embarrassing.”