Aaron Sorkin wanted Tom Cruise to play Steve Jobs in the new biopic about the Apple co-founder.

Leaked Sony emails show that the role - which has subsequently been handed to Michael Fassbender - was initially set aside for Tom, who was described by Aaron as ''an actor who can really handle language ... and a movie star who feels comfortable owning the stage''.

And when director Danny Boyle suggested Michael was the ideal candidate for the part, the screenwriter said: ''This used to be an event. I don't know who Michael Fassbender is and the rest of the world isn't going to care. This is insane.''

However, he later backtracked, saying Michael is a suitable candidate for the part of Jobs, who died in October 2011, aged 56.

Aaron said: ''He's a great actor whose time has come.

''Yeah, if the movie's good, he'll be on the cover of everything and get nominated for everything.''

The eagerly awaited film has endured lots of casting issues over the last few months, with Leonardo DiCaprio and Christian Bale both backing out of the project.

Earlier this week, Oscar-winning actress Natalie Portman declined the chance to star as Joanna Hoffman, the former Mac marketing chief.

However, Seth Rogen has been cast as Steve Wozniak, while Jeff Daniels is reportedly being lined up to play the part of John Sculley, the CEO of Apple from 1983 to 1993.