Victims of several hack attacks, Sony’s latest drama has unfolded in the formed of leaked emails between Sony Pictures Co-Chairman Amy Pascal and Scott Rudin, who was a producer on the highly anticipated Steve Jobs biopic, Jobs.
While the Aaron Sorkin adaptation inexplicably has been sitting in movie-making limbo since we heard about it about three years ago, the leaked emails reveal why getting everyone’s act together to actually create it was a disaster. Leonardo DiCaprio was in talks to place the titular character, and then Christian Balewas eyed for the role. But studio politics got in the way of everything, and somehow Angelina Jolie is experiencing the brunt of the slanderous emails.
The Unbroken director seems to be the spark of the explosive fight because she objected to friend and famed director, David Fincher, directing Jobs instead of her version ofCleopatra, which was written by screenwriter Eric Roth. However, according to the leaked emails, Rudin was dead set on having Fincher for the Apple biopic.
“YOU BETTER SHUT ANGIE DOWN BEFORE SHE MAKES IT VERY HARD FOR DAVID TO DO JOBS,” Rudin wrote in an email in Feb. 2014. Pascal, apparently sensing a threat, didn’t respond lightly, which caused the fight to completely explode.
“Do not f–king threaten me,” she wrote. “I have been asking you to engage with me on this for weeks.”
After that, Rudin loses it completely, attacking both Pascal and Jolie.
“What the hell are you talking about? Who’s threatening you? Let me remind you I brought this material to you and I can off her from it in a phone call. Don’t for one second even think about trying this s–t with me. There is no movie of Cleopatra to be made (and how that is a bad thing given the insanity and rampaging spoiled ego of this woman and the cost of the movie is beyond me) and if you won’t tell her that you do not like the script—which, let me remind you, SHE DOESN’T EITHER—this will just spin even further out into Crazyland but let me tell you I have zero appetite for the indulgence of spoiled brats and I will tell her this myself if you don’t.”
The two Hollywood honchos go back and forth, with Pascal throwing some serious shade herself, writing, “I have asked you to talk to [Jolie] with me and you don’t want to deal with it,” among other insults, but Rudin almost ends it with his fire.
“I’ve told you exactly how I want to do this material. It’s the ONLY way I want to do this material. I’m not remotely interested in presiding over a $180m ego bath that we both know will be the career-defining debacle for us both. I’m not destroying my career over a minimally talented spoiled brat who thought nothing of shoving this off her plate for eighteen months so she could go direct a movie.
I have no desire to be making a movie with her, or anybody, that she runs and that we don’t. She’s a camp event and a celebrity and that’s all and the last thing anybody needs is to make a giant bomb with her that any fool could see coming. We will end up being the laughing stock of our industry and we will deserve it, which is so clearly where this is headed that I cannot believe we are still wasting our time with it.”
Rudin proceeded to send one more email—a calmer one, for sure—but beyond that the fallout continues when Fincher seemingly lies to Pascal after news leaked of him ditching Jobs.
After months of back-and-forths between Sony, talent agency WME and Rudin, the project has yet to get its foot off the ground. Adding insult to injury to Pascal’s past several months, Rudin attacked her one more time via email, claiming she ultimately destroyed her own career.
“You’ve destroyed your relationships with half the town over how you’ve behaved on this movie. If you don’t think it’s true, wait and see. Let’s see the next filmmaker WME puts in business at Sony or the next piece of star talent. I’ll bet my house I’m right.”
At this point, it seems like Jobs is already a long-lost idea.