The Making of the Facebook Movie: A TIME Roundtable

David Fincher and Aaron Sorkin sat down with TIME's Lev Grossman to talk about why they made The Social Network, a movie about Facebook

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Merrick Morton / Columbia Pictures

Andrew Garfield, left, and Jesse Eisenberg in The Social Network

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TIME: Mezrich's book was criticized for being too sympathetic to co-founder Eduardo Saverin. Did you worry about that?

Sorkin: There were a number of different versions of the truth coming from three or four or five people. And rather than pick one and dramatize that, I wanted to dramatize the fact that there are three or four or five different versions of the truth. Everybody has their own version, and everybody is right, and everybody is wrong.

Fincher: And when you really get down in it, when I'm directing a scene where there's four people on this side of the table and there's four people on that side, when I'm talking to people over here, I'm saying, "Look at that little asshole! Look what he's done to you! You gave him the germ of this thing, and he fleeced you!" And on the other side, I'm going, "Look at these privileged, entitled guys who couldn't even begin to conceive of what it actually took. If not for you, there isn't $15 billion or $25 billion to divide!"

Sorkin: By the way, I've been that guy. I've been the Mark Zuckerberg in that situation, and I have absolute empathy for him. With The West Wing, you'll get somebody who says, "But 10 years ago, I wrote a script about the President, and look at all the similarities! There are scenes that take place in the White House!"

Fincher: "Look at all this stuff in the Oval Office! Page after page!"

Sorkin: Frankly, the line "If you guys were the inventors of Facebook, you would have invented Facebook" — it's what I always want to say to these people. So I had a lot of empathy for Mark. And I will be clear and say I didn't speak to Eduardo at all either. So I'm not just batting from his side of the plate.

TIME: Last question —

Sorkin: Is it about my tie? I'm very concerned I chose the wrong tie this morning.

Fincher: I didn't want to say anything.

TIME: Does this movie mean that Hollywood is catching up to the galloping digitization of our daily lives? Doing things on Facebook, friending people, checking your news feed — these are so much a part of our daily routines now. But I don't think I've ever seen them onscreen before.

Sorkin: David did kind of a cool thing: it's not indicated in the script that this is the way it should be, but it's not until the last scene, when Mark himself goes onto Facebook, that we see the logo, that we see a Facebook page.

Fincher: You're talking about something so ubiquitous. It was like — you know, look, we're not making a Linda Blair roller-disco movie. We're not here to capitalize on Facebook.

Sorkin: I badly wanted to make a Linda Blair roller-disco movie. And I lost that argument.

Fincher: I know it still hurts.

TIME: So is the sequel the Twitter movie? Am I the 18th person to make that joke?

Sorkin: It's not a joke anymore. I just read yesterday, they're making a movie about the guys who invented Google.

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