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1 Upcoming Zack Snyder Adaptation Might Be A Terrible Mistake

ScreenRant logo ScreenRant 2/2/2023 Robert Hutton
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Although Zack Snyder has plenty of projects in development, one oft-mentioned dream film is a disaster waiting to happen. Snyder currently has a first-look deal with Netflix, which has produced the zombie movie Army of the Dead and upcoming sequel Planet of the Dead, with the sci-fi movie Rebel Moon set to release in 2023. Other Snyder projects that have been announced include Horse Latitudes, a drama about a war photographer in South America, and a version of the King Arthur story set during the American gold rush. However, it is Snyder's long-discussed adaptation of Ayn Rand's 1943 novel The Fountainhead that poses the biggest potential danger.

Interestingly, Snyder's stated reasons for adapting this novel are not its politics, but could still create issues as Snyder tries to forget the DCEU Snyderverse and his unfinished superhero story. The Fountainhead is the story of ambitious young architect Howard Roark, who struggles to overcome an establishment resistant to innovation. The novel was previously adapted into a 1949 movie starring Gary Cooper, which was a financial failure. Like Rand's fiction as a whole, the story is a vehicle to showcase Rand's philosophy of "Objectivism," which argues for the importance of individualism, and against government regulation and social programs.

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Why Adapting The Fountainhead Is A Huge Mistake

Ayn Rand was not just a popular author who happened to be right-wing. Her fiction was meant to support her libertarian values, and it was extremely successful in doing so, with high-profile Republican politicians citing her work as an inspiration behind their own controversial politics and divisive attitudes toward social programs. Rand's writing is also likely too didactic and dry to make a compelling Zack Snyder movie. The 2011 attempt to adapt Rand's magnum opus Atlas Shrugged was a critical and commercial flop, with two low-budget sequels beng quickly produced with different casts.

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Zack Snyder has been criticized for the perceived politics of his films, such as the use of racial stereotypes in 300, as well as for his association with the at-times toxic "Release the Snyder Cut" movement. Snyder has kept his actual politics close to the chest, but adapting such a notoriously conservative author's work would only encourage the suspicions of critics who portray him as a reactionary, no matter how much his version of The Fountainhead tried to steer away from political themes. With The Fountainhead unlikely to make for a commercially successful movie anyway, this is one Zack Snyder project that should be left unfinished.

Why Is Zack Snyder Adapting The Fountainhead?

When Snyder first announced plans to adapt The Fountainhead, he explained, "I’ve always felt like The Fountainhead’was such a thesis on the creative process and what it is to create something" in an interview with The Hollywood Reporter. Snyder has emphasized Rand's style and thematic interests rather than her political views when discussing his admiration for the author. The storyline of a creator struggling against a conformist establishment could certainly be relatable to Snyder given his experience with Warner Bros.

Currently, Snyder's The Fountainhead plans are on hold. In a 2021 New York Times interview, Snyder said that the political climate was not right for the movie, claiming, "We need a less divided country and a little more liberal government to make that movie, so people don’t react to it in a certain way." Snyder's move to Netflix after his falling out with Warner Bros presents further obstacles to the project, as Warner owned the film rights to Rand's novel as of 2016. Even if the western political environment became less polarized - which does not seem like it will happen anytime soon - Zack Snyder's Fountainhead adaptation would still be a bad idea.

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