After 53 years, Ayn Rand’s Atlas Shrugged is finally being made into a film. In the above clip Reason TV sits down with director Paul Johansson. I was slightly skeptical when this movie was first announced. However, after reading several interviews with Johansson it’s clear that he is extremely passionate about this project.
Businessman John Aglialaro has held the rights to Atlas Shrugged for many years. The rights were due to expire this summer and so the film was rushed into production a couple days before the deadline. The film will be an independent production and no major stars are attached. The filmmakers see this as a plus since they can present the ideas of Rand without having to deal with studio execs who just don’t get it.
The story is going to be split into three full length films. The first of which is slated to arrive in theaters sometime next year. Many fans have been cautiously enthusiastic. The production has been slightly tumultuous and mired in doubt. Johansson was only brought on to direct about ten days before shooting, the previous director having been fired. The film has a reported budget of $5 million (although producers claim it is at least double that). Some fans are also disappointed that the film isn’t being done by a big studio with an all-star cast.
However, I’m quite confident that this will be far superior to any major studio production. Going the independent route, with a cast who really cares about the material could make this film great despite its meager budget. It’s too easy to imagine a major studio flaking out on the philosophy.
If this film winds-up being successful it could possibly breed a whole new interest in the ideas of Rand and therefore in the ideas of the entire liberty movement. If the filmmakers are true to the philosophy and are able to present a compelling adaptation then this movie could introduce millions to the ideas of freedom and true capitalism.Published in