Steve Wozniak, a co-founder of Apple, has not seen Steve Jobs: The Man in the Machine, director Alex Gibney's latest documentary on the difficult computer virtuoso and visionary. But from what he's cobbled together from friends, he's garnered that "it exactly represents the way [Jobs] was."
In an interview with the BBC, Wozniak – affectionately known by his friends and contemporaries as "Woz" – confirmed that Jobs was, as Andrew Ross Sorkin says in his New York Times review of the doc, "a complicated leader: brilliantly creative and obsessive about details yet so maniacal that he could make his colleagues cry and, yes, he created his own truth at times."
Wozniak's own viewpoint is a little more streamlined: "Steve Jobs always dealt very nicely and respectfully with me – we were friends to the end – and I never saw a lot of the bad behavior that he was accused of by others."
As for whether another Jobs film, the Universal biopic Steve Jobs, written by Aaron Sorkin (The Social Network) and directed by Danny Boyle (Slumdog Millionaire) did its due diligence in portraying the Apple CEO? Wozniak has delivered his on verdict on the movie: an unprecedented, resounding, finite (and paraphrased) "yes." (Unprecedented, at least, in regard to Wozniak's opinions on prior depictions of Jobs, such as Ashton Kutcher's take on the eponymous character in 2013's Jobs, which Woz himself reviewed on Gizmodo.)
"In some prior movies, I saw [the actors] simulating Steve Jobs, but they didn't really make me feel like I was in his head understanding what was going on inside of him — his personality," Wozniak explained. "This movie absolutely accomplishes that, and it's due to great acting, which obviously comes from great directing."
When asked about a light, cursory criticism that Boyle's film has so far received – namely, that Michael Fassbender, who plays the titular role, barely resembles Steve Jobs – Wozniak was dismissive, as he's more invested in the spirit than the letter of the law (well, biopic).
"A lot of people think the face of Steve Jobs matters, but it's his brain, his head, the way he worked, how did he think, how did he act with people — that's important," said Wozniak, "[Fassbender] does an incredible job with a tight script."
Wozniak then dropped a small personal fact that might have aided in his opinion: "Of course, I have prosopagnosia, where I don't really store faces. So, to me faces don't matter that much anyway."
And as for the portrayal of his fictive counterpart in the Universal movie, played by comedy titan Seth Rogen?
"I thought he did an excellent job," affirmed Wozniak.
Steve Jobs will be released on October 9, the fourth anniversary of the CEO's death. Steve Jobs: The Man In The Machine is out now.
Check out both trailers below.