Filming begins on Universal's Steve Jobs biopic starring Michael Fassbender

Filming got under way in San Francisco on a new biopic about Apple co-founder Steve Jobs, with Hollywood's Michael Fassbender (above) playing the role of the mercurial computer pioneer. -- PHOTO: TWENTIETH CENTURY FOX
Filming got under way in San Francisco on a new biopic about Apple co-founder Steve Jobs, with Hollywood's Michael Fassbender (above) playing the role of the mercurial computer pioneer. -- PHOTO: TWENTIETH CENTURY FOX

LOS ANGELES (AFP) - Filming got under way in San Francisco on a new biopic about Apple co-founder Steve Jobs, with Hollywood's Michael Fassbender playing the role of the mercurial computer pioneer.

The movie titled Steve Jobs is being directed by Oscar-winner Danny Boyle of Slumdog Millionaire (2008) and Trainspotting (1996), and is scheduled for release next year.

The film has suffered several delays and changes in the cast and production team. Now under Universal Pictures, it was originally a Sony Pictures project which collapsed last year over internal squabbles around who should play the role of Jobs.

German-Irish Fassbender, 37, was not a favourite, according to e-mails leaked after Sony's computers were hacked last year, Bloomberg reports said. The cyber-attack was reportedly in response to Sony's controversial film The Interview, in which American journalists are enlisted to assassinate North Korean leader Kim Jong Un.

Seth Rogen, who starred in The Interview, will play Jobs' sidekick at Apple, Steve Wozniak, in the biopic Steve Jobs.

Fassbender took on the title role after it was turned down by Leonardo DiCaprio and Christian Bale. Bale, Oscar-winning British star of The Dark Knight, pulled out of the project in November, news reports said, after deciding he wasn't right for the part.

The screenplay for Steve Jobs is being written by Aaron Sorkin, who won an Academy Award for his script for The Social Network (2010), about Facebook and its co-founder Mark Zuckerberg.

Fassbender, one of Hollywood's most accomplished actors, is best-known for dark and intense dramatic roles in movies including Shame (2011) and 12 Years A Slave (2013).

Other actors with major roles in Steve Jobs include Jeff Daniels and Kate Winslet.

The Apple inventor's storied life already has been rendered on the big screen in 2013's Jobs starring Ashton Kutcher, a film that received tepid reviews.