Steve Jobs: Seth Rogen Talks Playing Steve Wozniak & Danny Boyle’s Process

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Seth Rogen plays Steve Wozniak in the upcoming Aaron Sorkin-scripted biopic Steve Jobs, which will see Michael Fassbender playing the titular co-founder of that little brand known as Apple.

Known more for his comedic roles, the depiction of a real-life persona is a bit of a change of pace for the actor, and Rogen has spoken about the pressures that come with playing someone that can apply their scrutiny to the work.

“Yeah, he was, which is a lot of pressure,” Rogen told Variety when asked if Wozniak was happy with his portrayal.

“I didn’t even know he was coming to this until a few weeks ago and it made me really nervous when I heard he was. Because when you play someone who’s alive, you don’t want them to hate it, so the fact that he’s here means he didn’t, so that was flattering.”

One would imagine that Rogen’s usual rapid-fire delivery of dialogue would mean that he would be a natural when it comes to a screenplay by Aaron Sorkin (The Social Network, Moneyball), but the actor says Sorkin’s writing did provide a bit of a challenge.

“…A lot of times [the script] was laden with technical jargon that I really don’t understand at all. But that being said, he writes in a way that if you approach it correctly, in my opinion, it sounds incredibly natural,” Rogen explained.

“…There’s a much bigger margin of error with Sorkin’s style. It can be perfect and when it isn’t it can be — and I can’t think of an example where I’ve seen of this, but just in the process of making the movie there’s moments where you’re like, ‘That could not sound more like two people saying stuff that was written for them.’ And then when it clicks in it’s like, ‘Oh, no, it sounds like an actual conversation that people would have.'”

Then there’s Danny Boyle, the Academy Award-winning director behind 28 Days Later, Slumdog Millionaire, and 127 Hours. This will mark the first time Rogen has worked with Boyle, a director that, from what Rogen says, does a great job at letting the actors naturally use “their space”.

“He’s incredible. I’ve been a big fan for years and years. It was impressive to watch, and I think after watching the finished product, he had a lot of things going on that I and the actors and a lot of people were completely unaware of,” Rogen said.

“There were plans visually that we didn’t need to know about and didn’t know about. It felt very loose on set, not as far as the dialogue, but as far as what you could do: You could move, you could get up, you could sit down. Then when you watch it it couldn’t seem more deliberate. And it honestly just looked totally different than I expected it to.”

Steve Jobs, which also stars Kate Winslet and Jeff Daniels, will be hitting Australia on October 8 and the U.S. on October 9.

Jump over to Variety to read the full interview.

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