Does "The Social Network," the so-called "the Facebook movie" due out in October, do justice to the company's founder? Not really, suggests Jose Antonio Vargas, a contributing writer at The New Yorker.
Filmmaker Aaron Sorkin wrote the screenplay based off “The Accidental Billionaires,” an unauthorized biography by Ben Mezrich. The movie portrays Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg in an unflattering light. The movie's trailer has been drawing widespread Internet attention (as well as some parodies). As a result, the movie has spawned tensions between Facebook and the film's producers.
Vargas intimated that the depiction of Zuckerberg may be less fact and more of a case of Hollywood making presumptions about tech types.
"[Mark Zuckerberg has] been a pretty enigmatic guy in Silicon Valley...," said Vargas, who interviewed the 28-year-old CEO for a piece in The New Yorker. "In many ways, the movie presents this caricature of this Silicon Valley geek. I was interested in getting to know what his everyday life is like. What I find interesting is just kind of how normal he is."
Vargas pointed out that Zuckerberg lives seven blocks from work, rents, and drives an Acura.
"We're talking about a guy Forbes called the world's youngest self-made billionaire," he said. "He's living like a regular software engineer in the valley and yet he is running Facebook. Aaron Sorkin frankly had an idea of who Mark Zuckerberg is, but none of us really do."
Neither Sorkin nor Mezrich talked directly to Zuckerberg for their work, Vargas pointed out.
Zuckerberg is concerned about the caricature of himself in the film, Vargas went on to say, particularly the idea of him being "this insecure kid who just wanted to get into one of these final clubs."
"Insecure is probably not the word I would use to describe Mark Zuckerberg," said Vargas.