You’d think that one of the biggest pre-requisites for making a movie would be to hire some actors before you decide you’re going to start filming in a few weeks time, but that doesn’t seem to have stopped the man behind an adaptation of Ayn Rand’s Atlas Shrugged. He’s decided that filming will go ahead in June, even though he’s yet to get anyone to firmly agree to appear in it.
The move seems to have been borne out of frustration, as entrepreneur John Aglialoro bought the rights to the 1,100 page novel in 1992, and has been trying to get it to the screen ever since. His vision is for a series four films, but despite lofty plans and stars ranging from Angelina Jolie to Charlize Theron being attached at one time or another, it’s never actually made it out of the starting gate. So, fed up with the machinations of Hollywood and the comings and going on actors, he’s set a start date and is going to start making the movie anyway.
There will, of course, be some actors, but while Aglialoro is apparently still trying to get Theron to return and also talking to the likes of Maggie Gyllenhaal, he’s indicated the production will go ahead with little known talent, even if there isn’t a star in sight (and Deadline is reporting neither actress has any intention of shooting the movie next month).
While stories of dedicated film amateurs trying to bring their vision to the screen by doing it themselves outside the system are great, they also have a history of ending in disaster, and the omens don’t sound good here. Not only does he have no actor, but Aglialoro’s director, Stephen Polk, is an actor whose greatest qualification for the job of bringing a complex and beloved book to the screen seems to be that his father was once chairman of MGM (although he did direct the 2008 indie flick Baggage). Perhaps they’ll pull off a masterpiece, but the signs don’t look good.