An ongoing daily series of scenes for a Steve Jobs biopic.
It’s a narrative experiment. It’s not going to follow a neat dramatic arc. It’s going to be a little episodic and random. Much like the subject matter.
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“BOSCUTTI’S STEVE JOBS” SCENE 39
2007 – CORNING CEO OFFICE – DAY
WENDELL WEEKS, 46, is Corning’s CEO. He is standing in the corner of his second floor black-glazed office in upstate New York, looking out onto the Chemung River.
Hi, I’m Steve Jobs.
Weeks turns around and sees Steve Jobs, 51, loping in. Dressed in trademark black mock turtleneck, jeans, sneakers. Weeks is dressed in a crisp suit, white shirt and striped tie.
Weeks walks towards jobs, right hand outstretched. They meet and shake.
Weeks, Wendell Weeks. I see you found us alright.
Wendell and Jobs have spoken several times on the phone about a new glass screen for the new phone Apple is working on. Jobs doesn’t want a plastic screen, he wants glass. But no one makes glass thin enough or tough enough.
The most radical thing about the new Apple phone form factor is the screen takes up the entire surface. All the high-impact plastic screens Apple tested scratch horribly.
Even worse, Jobs doesn’t like the feel. Plastic doesn’t feel smooth and sleek.
A few days ago he sent Wendell an email.
From: Steve Jobs
Date: Sat, 27 Jan 2007 16:51:12 -0700
To: Wendell Weeks
Cc: Steve Jobs
Subject: I’m coming to Corning
We need to talk and if that’s not possible over the phone or via email, then I need to come to your office and go for a walk on the river with you and resolve this. The time is now to begin creating a new phone experience, and Apple is the company to do it. I need your help.
How do I find you once I get to the airport?
Now he’s in the office with Wendell, telling him how to make strong glass. After 23 years with Corning, Weeks knows everything there is to know about glass. He puts his hand up and interrupts Jobs.
Steve, shut up a minute. I know how to make glass. Listen to me.
You don’t want to thermally strengthen glass. It makes it too dense. What you want to do is chemically strengthen the glass. Ideally by creating a compressive layer through ion exchange. Have you ever heard of Chemcor glass?
Jobs shakes his head.
It’s an aluminosilicate we developed that contains silicon dioxide, aluminum oxide, magnesium, sodium. It’s the aluminum oxide that gives the glass remarkable strength and durability, and much higher surface tension.
Lighter and stronger, right?
Four times stronger.
Down to the millimeter.
It’s really quite remarkable, quite beautiful.
Jobs leans in. Weeks runs the tips of his fingers across the palm of his hand.
Cool to the touch, smooth but with a surface to it.
In six months I need enough of that glass to make a million phones.
That’s not going to happen, Steve.
Why the fuck not?!
Steve, we’ve only made it in the lab. We’ve never actually put it into production.
Jobs looks down.
We don’t have a factory to make it, we don’t have a manufacturing plant.
Jobs looks up.
Don’t be afraid, Wendell, you can do it.
Steve, it’s impossible. Where am I going to get the resources?
Jobs keeps looking at him. Right at him.
Don’t be afraid, you can do it.
Weeks looks at Jobs.
You can do it.