And The Nominees

60-MINUTES-03

MINUTES-03

make one prediction: the broadcast will last about three hours and much of

it will be taken up by acceptance speeches and thank you. That`s because

all movies are collaborations in which many people deserve credit, even if

they are not nominated. The best example this year may be Steve Jobs, a

complex and cautionary character study of the Apple co-founder that

generated critical acclaim, disappointing receipts at the box office, and

two of the best performances of the year.>

AND THE NOMINEES

STEVE KROFT: The Academy Awards are next Sunday night, but it`s possible now to make one prediction: the broadcast will last about three hours and much of it will be taken up by acceptance speeches and thank yous. That`s because all movies are collaborations in which many people deserve credit, even if they are not nominated. The best example this year may be Steve Jobs, a complex and cautionary character study of the Apple co-founder that generated critical acclaim, disappointing receipts at the box office, and two of the best performances of the year. Michael Fassbender and Kate Winslet are both up for Oscars, not just because they are great actors, but because they had very demanding roles in a very unusual movie that allowed them to show just how good they really are and that would not have happened without screenwriter Aaron Sorkin and director Danny Boyle.

(Begin VT)

(Excerpt from Steve Jobs)

STEVE KROFT (voiceover): It was by every measure a unique and ambitious project about the inner workings of a recently deceased genius. Someone who saw the future, and built it by breathing life into the personal computer, defining how it would be used and selling the idea to the American public.

(Excerpt from Steve Jobs)

STEVE KROFT (voiceover): Unlike many Hollywood films, Steve Jobs wasn`t built around a star. It was built around a massive theatrical script from Academy Award-winning screenwriter Aaron Sorkin on the right, then placed in the hands of Academy Award-winning director Danny Boyle on the left.

DANNY BOYLE: Everybody knows Aaron Sorkin`s scripts. There`s a huge amount of lines. There`s a huge amount of interchange. You got to do a lot of learning to be able to get it up to pace.

STEVE KROFT (voiceover): To begin with there were more than a hundred and eighty pages of dialogue, nearly twice the size of an average script, a drama in three acts that takes place backstage at three different product launches spanning fourteen years in Steve Jobs` life. It is two hours of talk, intelligent, often humorous conversation and adversarial confrontation.

(Excerpt from Steve Jobs)

STEVE KROFT (voiceover): It was the director`s job to bring action and movement to the Sorkin script, which read like the sound of Steve Jobs mind.

(Excerpt from Steve Jobs)

DANNY BOYLE: It`s this-- this tormented mind and what`s involved in the process, as-- he saw it, of changing the world, you know. And he did change the world back then. And-- and how do you do that? And it`s that fevered mind.

(Excerpt from Steve Jobs)

STEVE KROFT (voiceover): When it came to casting the lead, Boyle thought there was only a tiny number of people who could pull off the complicated and demanding role. He was less interested in landing someone who looked like Steve Jobs than finding a committed actor determined to convince people he was Steve Jobs.

(Excerpt from Steve Jobs)

STEVE KROFT (voiceover): He decided on Michael Fassbender, the rising Irish star with the German surname and a work ethic like the man he was picked to play.

DANNY BOYLE: He has a very kind of Jobsian approach, I think. He`s so focused and uncompromising about the way he does the work.

STEVE KROFT: Is this the most complicated thing you`ve ever done?

MICHAEL FASSBENDER: It`s the hardest thing I`ve ever done.

STEVE KROFT (voiceover): Fassbender had been praised for his part in Quentin Tarantino`s Inglorious Bastards.

(Excerpt from Inglorious Bastards)

STEVE KROFT (voiceover): And he received an Academy Award-nomination for his supporting role in 12 Years a Slave. His range runs from Macbeth--

(Excerpt from Macbeth)

STEVE KROFT (voiceover): --to Magneto the Villain in the X-Men action franchise but Steve Jobs was going to be different.

MICHAEL FASSBENDER: It was like an action piece in words. You know--

STEVE KROFT: No exploding cars.

MICHAEL FASSBENDER: No.

STEVE KROFT: No sex.

MICHAEL FASSBENDER: Nope.

STEVE KROFT: Not ev-- any romance.

MICHAEL FASSBENDER: Mmmm. I was, like, perfect. This is going to be great. Yeah, it was just-- it was such an unusual piece of writing.

DANNY BOYLE: Because it was such an enormous, it was like tackling a huge-- one of the big Shakespeare`s, like a Lear or--

MICHAEL FASSBENDER: Yeah.

DANNY BOYLE: --a Hamlet. Or, you know, it`s like a mountain to climb.

STEVE KROFT (voiceover): Kate Winslet first heard that the Steve Jobs movie was casting not from her agent or producer Scott Rudin, but from her hair and makeup person while shooting a film in Australia.

KATE WINSLET: I just knew that it was going to be electric to be in a room with Michael Fassbender and Danny Boyle. And I honestly promise you, it absolutely was.

STEVE KROFT (voiceover): Winslet, who has one Oscar already to go with six nominations, can have just about any role in Hollywood she wants.

(Excerpt from Steve Jobs)

STEVE KROFT (voiceover): But no one seemed to be thinking about her for this one, the part of Apple marketing whiz Joanna Hoffman, who was one of the few people who could handle Steve Jobs.

You did want to do this movie. You sought out the role, right?

KATE WINSLET: Yes. I-- I offered my-- offered my services and let it be known that should they be interested in casting completely against type and considering the blonde English woman to play the dark-haired Polish- Armenian, I`d be delighted.

STEVE KROFT (voiceover): With some wit and an iPhone, she managed to get their attention.

KATE WINSLET: I gave them a little bit of a nudge. And I-- I put a dark- haired wig on myself and some glasses and made myself look as much like the real Joanna Hoffman as I possibly could. And I took a selfie and sent it to Scott Rudin, and it seemed to do the trick. And Danny Boyle came to Australia and we had a meeting. And he asked me to play the role.

STEVE KROFT (voiceover): By the time, Kate Winslet arrived in San Francisco to begin shooting, she and the rest of the cast had read the script and realized they were facing a huge challenge--a fast-paced drama that unfolds in hallways, on staircases and in dressing rooms. Winslet, whose character was a composite of the strong women in Jobs` life, found it all a bit terrifying.

Why terrifying?

KATE WINSLET: Terrifying because it`s a hundred-eighty-seven-page script. And it flows. There`s a rhythm to it. There`s a pace to it that has to feel entirely accidental and fluid. And the only way to really honor that and respect those words is to know them and to not forget them. That`s the hardest part.

(Excerpt from Steve Jobs)

KATE WINSLET: Because if you forget even one word, one line, or you pause for just too long while sort of trying to remember what comes next, the whole thing unravels.

STEVE KROFT (voiceover): Danny Boyle, who spent years directing at the Royal Court Theatre in London, knew exactly what his actors were up against and got the studio to agree to a costly six weeks of rehearsal. The cast would learn one act at a time, then film it in sequence.

DANNY BOYLE: I couldn`t see any other way that the actors would be able to control this beast, this huge beast of-- this extraordinary dialogue that he`d written as a way into this man`s mind. And I thought the only way the actors can get on top of it and own it, which is the key, I think, is by breaking it down and letting us rehearse.

KATE WINSLET: We rehearsed the first scene-- well, act, first scene. And we got it-- as-- we got it down. And then we went and filmed it. And then filming would stop, and we would go back and we would shoot-- we would rehearse the second part. And then we would go in and shoot that. And then filming would stop again. And so there`s this crew on hiatus while we would go off and rehearse again for another twelve days. And then we`d go back in and shoot. So by the time we got onto the set, we were already on performance number fifty, because we had been doing it for two weeks straight.

STEVE KROFT (voiceover): Fassbender, who had by far the most lines, saw Steve Jobs as a great man and a flawed human being. A visionary and a vainglorious control freak.

(Excerpt from Steve Jobs)

STEVE KROFT (voiceover): A brilliant motivator and recruiter of talent--

(Excerpt from Steve Jobs)

STEVE KROFT (voiceover): --who could be an unreasonable boss, an indifferent father and an unreliable friend.

(Excerpt from Steve Jobs)

STEVE KROFT: He`s not a very sympathetic character.

MICHAEL FASSBENDER: You say that. I-- yeah, I-- I don`t-- I find him to be. I think, you know, when you have such strong convictions and a lack of patience with-- that goes with it, and a sharp tongue and, you know, elements of cruelty perhaps, you know, it`s-- it can come across as-- as maybe a bit harsh for people to take onboard. I think he was an extraordinary person. And he changed the way we lived our lives. I never looked at him or approached him as an unsavory character.

STEVE KROFT: Unpleasant? Unsociable?

MICHAEL FASSBENDER: Yeah, unsociable, I would say. Yeah. You know, I suppose, approaching it as an actor, unpleasant isn`t really something that I want to set out to play, you know. I can`t really play unpleasant. But if somebody said, play somebody who`s got a lack of patience, who`s very-- you know, got a very strong vision, is unrelenting in that vision, you know, has a problem perhaps with emotional connection, now I`m going somewhere. Now I can start putting together something.

STEVE KROFT (voiceover): Fassbender believes Jobs` antisocial tendencies may have been a convenient way of putting distance between himself and other people, a way of managing their judgments and expectations of him.

(Excerpt from Steve Jobs)

STEVE KROFT (voiceover): All of this made little difference to Jobs` widow who was unhappy with her husband`s portrayal. Apple refused to cooperate with the project. CEO Tim Cook called it opportunistic. For the most part the cast and Danny Boyle shrugged it off.

DANNY BOYLE: His importance to our world now is such that you can`t ignore him. You have to write as much right about these guys-- and not just him, there are many, many other figures that are turning the world around, literally overnight. So for that reason, it felt like it was important to tell a story. There is a Steve that Apple would like to actually present to the public. They have a character, Steve, and they want to keep that story going. And it`s very important that writers challenge that occasionally and not just trust their parent companies to tell them.

STEVE KROFT (voiceover): Danny Boyle has always had an aversion to that kind of power. A working class guy with no discernible ego, he joined the ranks of Britain`s top directors after winning an Academy Award for Slumdog Millionaire, and he became a national hero for directing the elaborate opening ceremony for the 2012 Olympics in London. Then he became very famous for turning down a knighthood from the court of Queen Elizabeth.

You were offered a knighthood.

DANNY BOYLE: Yes, I was. But that-- it`s not really the-- it`s not my cup of tea, really. I`d feel very-- I`d I feel very fake walking ar-- I find it difficult enough being called Mister Boyle, which as I age I`m increasingly called. I find that hard enough, anyway. So, any-- anything else, I-- I wouldn`t be comfortable with.

STEVE KROFT: Did you know this was in the works? Did you know this was coming? Did they-- or did your name just appear on the list?

DANNY BOYLE: No, no. You get a phone call.

STEVE KROFT: And you just told them flat out.

DANNY BOYLE: Yeah. And I-- and you get another phone call to see if you`d change your mind.

STEVE KROFT: No regrets.

DANNY BOYLE: N-- well-- no, no. Not-- not-- not-- not at all, no. Absolutely not.

STEVE KROFT (voiceover): If either Michael Fassbender or Kate Winslet win an Oscar next Sunday, Mister Boyle will likely be one of the first people thanked along with Aaron Sorkin. Neither were nominated this year. They all share some disappointment that more people haven`t seen Steve Jobs, but they all say it`s getting harder and harder to get people out of their houses and away from their TVs, premium cable and on demand services which is the marketplace Steve Jobs is now moving into hoping to find a brand new audience.

KATE WINSLET: It was an amazing experience. I honestly couldn`t have cared less if no one ever saw this film, because it was such an amazing experience to be a part of. I mean, there are so many reasons as an actor that I can-- I can march onward in my life and go, stake in the ground, I`m proud of that.

(End VT)

ANNOUNCER: Can the Steve Jobs movie be both true and fiction? Go to 60minutesovertime.com, sponsored by Lyrica.

(ANNOUNCEMENTS)

LUMBER LIQUIDATORS

ANDERSON COOPER: Now an update on our story on Lumber Liquidators, about how the leading hardwood retailer in the country sold Chinese-made laminate flooring that did not meet U.S. health and safety standards and released potentially harmful levels of formaldehyde. After our story aired last March, the Consumer Product Safety Commission working with the Centers for Disease Control launched a study of that laminate flooring. This month, the government published its findings. They showed the flooring gave off enough formaldehyde to irritate the eyes, nose and throat and could trigger breathing problems. It also increased cancer risks by a small amount.

After the report was published, 60 MINUTES was alerted to the possibility that government scientists made a major mathematical mistake in their report. We sent the report to scientists at several universities and discovered the government forgot to convert feet to meters in some calculations. That error means all the predicted formaldehyde levels from lumber liquidators flooring are 3.3 times higher than government scientists calculated, which can amount to more than eighteen times higher levels of formaldehyde than those in a normal home, and triple the cancer risk, to a level that`s considered unacceptable by national and international health agencies. The Centers for Disease Control has admitted its mistake and issued a correction. The Consumer Product Safety Commission is continuing its investigation and told us it`s working to provide more specific answers for homeowners about the safety concerns.

I`m Anderson Cooper. We`ll be back next week with another edition of 60 MINUTES.

END

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