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Elon Musk Was Inspiration For 'Don't Look Up' Character In Netflix Movie

Benzinga logo Benzinga 2/14/2022 Chris Katje
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An Academy Award nominated film could have Tesla Inc (NASDAQ: TSLA) CEO Elon Musk to thank as he served as the key inspiration for a central character in the movie.

What Happened: The Netflix Inc (NASDAQ: NFLX) movie “Don’t Look Up” received a limited theatrical release in December 2021 before hitting the streaming platform.

The movie is now a multi-Academy Award nominee, scoring nominations for categories of “Best Picture,” “Best Original Screenplay,” “Best Editing” and “Best Original Score.”

The movie features Leonardo DiCaprio, Jennifer Lawrence, Meryl Streep, Mark Rylance and others in an apocalyptic tale of the world ending due to a comet that will destroy Earth.

One of the key characters in the movie is billionaire and technology CEO Peter Isherwell, played by Rylance.

Many who watched the movie have noted the similarities of physical appearance and portrayal to several famous tech CEOs including Steve Jobs, Mark Zuckerberg, Jeff Bezos and Musk.

Now, movie lovers have the answer as to who was the true inspiration for the movie character.

Rylance said he looked at Jobs, Zuckerberg, Bezos and Musk for his portrayal of Isherwell with Musk being the basis of the character.

“I looked at all those fellas. Maybe I should have gone down that more Californian, high-tech thing. But I went for something slightly different. I did read Elon Musk’s book – about half of it,” Rylance told The Hollywood Reporter.

Rylance said Musk and other individuals have “high-minded ideas” and don’t think they’re bad people. The actor said this could make people like Musk dangerous.

“I certainly thought a lot about that mindset of men and technology being the greatest thing in the universe, that nothing else is a higher force, and anything that nature throws at us, we’ll deal with it,” the actor said.

“You get that impression from Elon Musk. They think they’re going to save humanity. I think they’re dangerous,” Rylance added.

Related Link: 'Don't Look Up' Breaks A Netflix Record: Here's How It Happened 

Why It’s Important: Isherwell plays an important role in the movie, with experimental technology from his company selected to help save the human race.

“Don’t Look Up” broke records for Netflix and is one of the most watched movies on the streaming platform of all-time.

Weeks after its release, the movie was still the seventh most watched English language film for the week of Jan. 31 through Feb. 6, 2022 with 6.9 million hours. The film ranked as the number one movie on Netflix for three weeks in a row.

“Don’t Look Up” had 152.3 million hours watched during the week of Dec. 27, 2021 through Jan. 2, 2022.

The Academy Awards air on Mar. 27, 2022 on ABC, a unit of The Walt Disney Co (NYSE: DIS).

Photo: Courtesy of NASA Kennedy on Flickr

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