Saturday, February 6, 2010

Ayn Rand Popularity Spurs Release of Lost Film

Although Feb. 2 marks her 105th Birthday, novelist Ayn Rand’s surging popularity resembles that of a rising young literary star. Rand, the controversial author of “The Fountainhead,” died in 1982, but her magnum opus, “Atlas Shrugged,” sold a half million copies in 2009, more than at any time in the 52 years since its publication. Why? Simply put, Rand’s 1957 epic chillingly foretells an America taken over by government bureaucrats coercing private industry and implementing draconian wealth redistribution legislation. News media and the Internet have been abuzz over the uncanny parallels between Rand’s fictional tale and today’s news headlines. Hollywood has taken notice. The movie industry has jumped on the bandwagon. Lionsgate Entertainment has announced that the long-delayed movie version of “Atlas Shrugged” has been reincarnated as a TV mini-series to begin shooting later this year. Rumors continue that Ted Turner is considering a remake of the 1949 Gary Cooper film, “The Fountainhead.” Film rights to Rand’s novelette, “Anthem,” have been acquired by Hollywood producer, Kerry O’Quinn. But perhaps the most unusual example of the Rand on-screen phenomenon is the recent DVD release of “We the Living,” the long-thought-lost movie version of her first novel. It was an unauthorized film made during World War II in Italy and, according to the film’s restorer/distributor, Duncan Scott, “It caused such a sensation, and such controversy, government officials ordered it to be burned.” more

HT: Publius

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