Friday, January 27, 2023

Snyder's "The Fountainhead" on Hold

Director Zack Snyder ("Watchmen") has put his developing Stone Quarry feature film project "The Fountainhead", adapting author Ayn Rand's 1943 novel, on hold, because its too 'politically charged' to be produced at this time:

"To me, it’s like, if you’re a filmmaker, you sort of understand if you’re looking at it from that lens",
said Snyder.

"...building a building and making a movie are very similar. You’re making little compromises constantly. Maybe one story less, and it’ll be very good. Does it really need all those fancy window frames? Maybe just make the windows. You wanted a mansion, and you end up with something that sort of looks like a house. For me, that’s always what 'The Fountainhead' was about. 

"For a lot of people, it’s a big political thing, but for me, it’s not so much about that..."

"In 'The Fountainhead', 'Howard Roark', is an architect who designs modernist buildings...

"...refusing to compromise with an architectural establishment unwilling to accept innovation. 

"His struggle reflects a belief that individualism is superior to collectivism.

"Roark is opposed by 'second-handers', who value conformity over independence and integrity, including Roark's former classmate 'Peter Keating', who succeeds by following popular styles, but turns to Roark for help with his own design problems.

"'Ellsworth Toohey', a socialist architecture critic who uses his influence to promote his political and social agenda, tries to destroy Roark's career. 

"Tabloid newspaper publisher 'Gail Wynand' seeks to shape popular opinion, befriending Roark, then betrays him when public opinion turns in a direction he cannot control.

"The most controversial character is Roark's lover, 'Dominique Francon'. She believes that non-conformity has no chance of winning, so she alternates between helping Roark and working to undermine him..."

"The Fountainhead" novel has been adapted into other media including an illustrated version syndicated in daily newspapers (1945)... a Warners feature (1949), starring Gary Cooper with a screenplay adapted by Rand.

Click the images to enlarge ...