Jeff Daniels, who recently won an Emmy for “The Newsroom,” is being eyed to play former Apple CEO John Sculley in Danny Boyle‘s Steve Jobs movie, multiple individuals familiar with the Universal project have told TheWrap.
While Daniels does not have an official offer yet, one is expected to materialize soon, as he’s considered Boyle’s top choice for the key supporting role.
A representative for Universal Pictures did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
Boyle is currently seeking a leading lady to play former Mac marketing chief Joanna Hoffman, as Natalie Portman recently passed on the project, which boasts a well-researched script by Emmy-winning “Newsroom” creator Aaron Sorkin, who adapted Walter Isaacson’s authorized biography of Jobs.
Sculley, who served as Apple’s CEO from 1983-1993, was among the people in Jobs’ inner circle who Sorkin met with to discuss the project. Matthew Modine played Sculley in the 2013 Ashton Kutcher movie “Jobs.”
The film is expected to follow Jobs during three stressful, high-profile product launches including the first Macintosh in 1984 and Apple’s 2001 debut of the iPod.
Universal recently picked up the Steve Jobs project from Sony, which inexplicably put it in turnaround. Production is now slated to start in the spring.
On the feature side, Daniels recently starred in Rian Johnson’s “Looper” and is preparing to return to sci-fi for Ridley Scott’s “The Martian,” which stars Matt Damon and Jessica Chastain. He currently stars opposite Jim Carrey in “Dumb and Dumber To,” which has grossed $117 million worldwide in less than one month of release.
Daniels previously starred in the box office hits “Speed” and “Arachnophobia” as well as the acclaimed dramas “Good Night, and Good Luck” and “Terms of Endearment.” He’s represented by ICM Partners.