One of the standout scenes at in The Social Network happens in the first five minutes of the movie. Erica Albright (Rooney Mara) is sitting in a bar with boyfriend Mark Zuckerberg (Jesse Eisenberg) when she says the following to him:
You are probably going to be a very successful computer person. But you’re going to go through life thinking that girls don’t like you because you’re a nerd. And I want you to know, from the bottom of my heart, that that won’t be true. It’ll be because you’re an asshole.
It basically sets the tone for the entire film. And it’s also undoubtedly one of the many scenes that made Facebook (the actual company) uneasy over the film. Well tonight, after ringing up a number of the major awards at The Golden Globes, writer Aaron Sorkin took a moment in his best screenplay acceptance speech to acknowledge the real Mark Zuckerberg and that very scene.
“I wanted to say to Mark Zuckerberg, if you’re watching tonight, Rooney Mara’s character makes a prediction at the beginning of the movie, she was wrong. You turned out to be a great entrepreneur, a visionary and an altruist,” Sorkin said on stage.
Later, while accepting the award for Best Picture of the year, producer Scott Rudin, had the following to say: “I want to thank everybody at Facebook; Mark Zuckerberg for his willingness to allow us to use his life and work as a metaphor through which to tell a story about communication and the way we relate to each other.”
This is, of course, at odds with the reports of the company’s decided unwillingness to see this movie made.
Sorkin also used a part of his speech to address to the charges that the film is misogynistic. “And I want to thank all the female nominees tonight for helping demonstrate to my young daughter that elite is not a bad word, it’s a an aspirational one. Honey, look around, smart girls have more fun, and honey, you’re one of them, I love you,” he said.
It seems like ages ago that we first heard that Hollywood would be making a movie based on the founding of Facebook. At the time, the entire thing seemed like a bit of a joke. Then Aaron Sorkin signed on to write it. Then David Fincher signed on to direct it. Then Trent Reznor signed on to score it. The end result? Best Screenplay, Best Director, Best Score, and Best Picture at the Golden Globes. And Oscar gold is likely to follow next.
It was perhaps Reznor who nailed what the ultimate reaction to the film would be. “It’s really fucking good. And dark!,” he wrote in July of last year. Indeed. Of course, he’s not as quick to praise Zuckerberg.