While “The Social Network” by David Fincher is broadcast this evening on Arte, a look back at the genesis of the famous social network created by Mark Zuckerberg and on the very first face of Facebook: that of Al Pacino!
We are in 2004. The world is gradually entering a new digital era, and the future giants of the Web are gradually emerging from the ground. At Harvard, in his student room, the young Mark Zuckerberg is making the final touches to his new creation: a site called TheFaceBook supposed to forge links between the students of his university, and which is about to become the social network the most famous in the history of the Internet.
Far from suspecting that his invention will earn him one day to be embodied by Jesse Eisenberg in a feature film by David Fincher (broadcast this evening on Arte), Zuckerberg puts his ship afloat. On the home page, the name of the site (which will soon lose its “the”), the blue and white colors which are still part of its visual identity today, a swarm of 0s and 1s representing the binary code and , at the top left of the screen, a mysterious face.
But to whom may the very first facies to have appeared on Facebook belong? Not to Mark Zuckerberg. Nor to his teammate Eduardo Saverin (played by Andrew Garfield in Fincher’s film). But to another famous Hollywood actor, a real movie star.
Indeed, looking a little closer, and as the writer David Kirkpatrick later confirmed in his book The Facebook Effect, the face that served as the site’s logo at that time was that of Al Pacino!
A true sacred monster of the big screen, notably famous for his roles in The Godfather, Scarface, L’Impasse or Heat, the actor was therefore – very probably without his knowledge – Facebook’s first mascot. Also according to Kirkpatrick’s book, the logo was made by a certain Andrew Callum, one of Zuckerberg’s friends. On the other hand, the story does not specify why the two comrades set their sights on Al Pacino.
(Re)discover the hidden details of “The Social Network”…