This is old news, but apparently, Al Ruddy, the producer of “The Godfather,” is planning to make a Netflix-type miniseries of Ayn Rand’s Atlas Shrugged. This is what he has in mind:
Mr. Ruddy, who is working up an outline for a writer or writers yet to be named, sees his rendition as a love story, built squarely around its commanding female protagonist, Dagny Taggart. (Angelina Jolie was in line for an earlier, never-made version.)
The main thing, Mr. Ruddy said, is to honor Ms. Rand’s insistence on making a film for the future. That means redrawing its capitalists and creators, who go on strike against creeping collectivism, as figures more familiar than the railroad heiress and industrial titans who figured in a book that was first published in 1957.
“When you look at guys like Jeff Bezos, he’s not only doing Amazon, he wants to colonize Mars,” Mr. Ruddy said. He spoke by telephone last week of his plan for a mini-series in which an Internet blackout led by Bezos-like figures might shut down cellphones, banks and almost everything else.
As for concerns about faithful Rand fans objecting to any liberties he might take with the book, Mr. Ruddy said he had none.
“If you can reimagine the Old Testament and the New Testament,” he said, “why can’t I reimagine Ayn Rand?”
Yeah, that sounds really great–Jeff Bezos meets Angelina Jolie on Mars after the Internet goes down. Can’t wait.
I’ve already given my two cents on this topic: if you want to do Rand, aim for low but solid ground; forget Atlas Shrugged for now and make an updated film version of We the Living. Not that I expect any of these media moguls to take my advice.
Meanwhile, I think Inspector Wang captures my essential reaction to the “re-imagining” of Atlas Shrugged that Al Ruddy has in mind.
Apologies for the “cultural appropriation.”