Some missing interview footage of the late Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) CEO and co-founder of Steve Jobs has been found and it has been prepared for an actual documentary movie release for theaters. The footage was from 20 years ago as part of a miniseries that ran on PBS in the U.S. and Channel 4 in Britain. The documentary will be played at Landmark Theatres on November 16th and November 17th.
There are Landmark Theatres in Atlanta, Baltimore, Boston, Chicago, Dallas, Denver, Detroit, Houston, Indianapolis, L.A., Milwaukee, Minneapolis, NYC, Philadelphia, San Diego, San Francisco, East Bay of the Bay Area, The Peninsula in the Bay Area, Seattle, St. Louis, and Washington D.C.
People have been curious about the life of Steve Jobs since he started Apple a few decades ago. The biography written about Steve Jobs by Walter Isaacson is currently at the top of the bestseller list. And a “60 Minutes” show featuring the book and author drew about 13 million viewers for CBS.
The movie documentary is called “Steve Jobs: The Lost Interview.” The movie was created out of a conversation between Robert Cringely and Steve Jobs. Jobs gave Cringely a 70 minute interview, but only 10 minutes of it was featured in the 1996 miniseries called “Triumph of the Nerds: The Rise of Accidental Empires.” This miniseries was about the origins of the PC industry and the growth of Silicon Valley.
“We lost all the raw footage completely,” said Cringely in an interview. However Cringely discovered that Paul Sen, the director of the miniseries had dubbed a VHS copy of the Steve Jobs interview and kept it in the back of his garage in Britain. Sen went looking for the interview after Jobs passed away and thought it would be interesting to watch. He contacted Cringely to tell him about what he found and thought that he could “gift it to the world” by putting it on a blog.
Cringely said that Sen did not see any commercial value in it. But Cringely said that he has three kids to put through college so maybe they could sell it. Cringely contacted Landmark Theatres co-owner Mark Cuban an e-mail to see if there would be any interest in screening it. Less than five minutes later, Mark Cuban replied.
When the interview was conducted, Jobs had been fired from Apple. In the interview he had some strong words against both Microsoft and Apple. He also talked about how he felt betrayed when being fired from the company that he founded.
“He was great that day,” said Cringely. “He was a cranky guy. I think we see that.” In the interview, Steve Jobs also mentions a prank that him and a friend did by calling the Vatican pretending to be Henry Kissinger wanting to talk to the pope.
Will people pay to watch a documentary of Steve Jobs? Perhaps. The cost to give a theatrical quality video from a VHS was $6,000. If 1,501 people watch the money, then Cringely would make a profit. Good thing that Cringely has a “large extended family.”
The question is whether there is enough interest in Jobs to get people to a movie theater to sit through an interview. “We are all taking a risk here. Maybe no one will come,” Cringely said.