Despite the talk and the buzz, I never thought it would actually happen. If any novel merits the term "unfilmable," certainly Ayn Rand's Atlas Shrugged is it. I mean, the climax is a 60-page radio broadcast! And the entire thing is what can charitably be called a screed, preaching Rand's extremely unliberal "objectivist" political philosophy. So when I heard that Vadim Perelman (The House of Sand and Fog and the upcoming The Life Before Her Eyes) was developing the project, with Angelina Jolie attached to star as Dagny Taggart, my reaction was quite simply: Pfffffft.

But it looks like I pfffffted too soon. Comingsoon.net talked to Perelman this week, and he told them that he's finishing up the script, and that Lionsgate wants to start shooting in December. So, uh: it looks like this might actually happen.

I would commit atrocities to get my hands on a copy of Perelman's screenplay. I can only imagine what it does to condense the thousand-page-plus book into even a very long movie. What worries me most is that the novel doesn't really exist without Rand's politics, if that makes any sense: they're so integral to the story that cutting them out would make everything else pretty much pointless. And I'm not sure Hollywood -- even the relatively adventurous Lionsgate -- has the stomach for a politically faithful adaptation.
categories Movies, Cinematical