OMG, you guys! Filming on the Atlas Shrugged major motion picture event has begun! Atlas Shrugged, of course, is the massively popular mid-20th century X-Men prequel in which a team of misfit billionaires endowed with mutant powers of Capitalism band together under the leadership of John Galt to defeat Communism by… running away? From it? I guess? I don’t know. For all the answers, you’d have to read the book. Which is over a thousand pages long, with only roughly nine million of those pages being devoted to extensive and poorly informed speeches about economic policy. OR, you could take a look at my rejected screenplay! Which, fortunately, I am re-printing for you right now:
BY SADY DOYLE
WITH AYN RAND
BUT MOSTLY SADY DOYLE
HANK REARDON, MULTI-MILLIONAIRE INDUSTRIALIST: Who is John Galt?
DAGNY TAGGART, MULTI-MILLIONAIRE INDUSTRIALIST/LADY: I would also like to know the answer to that question!
HANK REARDON: (Slaps DAGNY.)
DAGNY TAGGART: Ohhhh, so sexy!
HANK REARDON: And yet, I still wonder: Who is John Galt?
FRANCISCO D’ANCONIA, MULTI-MILLIONAIRE INDUSTRIALIST: I know. But I won’t tell you.
DAGNY TAGGART: Damn you! I loved you once!
(Flashback: A young Francisco D’Anconia and a young Dagny Taggart are in love.)
FRANCISCO D’ANCONIA, NOT YET A MULTI-MILLIONAIRE INDUSTRIALIST: (Slaps DAGNY.)
HANK REARDON: Seriously, though. Who is John Galt?
SOME GUY: Surprise, it’s me! And I hate poor people!
DAGNY TAGGART: I am in love with you now. You represent my ideal.
JOHN GALT: (Slaps DAGNY.)
Anyway, this movie: It is gonna suuuuuuuuuck. The Atlas Shrugged movie, once attached to Angelina Jolie and/or Charlize Theron and/or several actors you might actually have heard of at one point, has been reduced to a rush project with a $5 million budget (for context: I was watching the Se7en commentary track recently — don’t ask — and David Fincher complained about only having something like fifty thousand dollars for the title sequence), backed primarily by the CEO of an exercise equipment company, with the leads being played by some lady from a show called Mercy and that one Ugly Betty dude, and directed by — and starring! As John Galt! — Paul Johansson.
Who is Paul Johansson, you ask? (Haha. REFERENCES.) Well! He is lots of things! For one, continuing the theme of “every single person in Atlas Shrugged being somebody from a TV show I don’t watch,” he is a dude who was once on One Tree Hill. For another, he is the director of precisely two feature-length projects, apparently, in his entire life, one of those things being so obscure that it is not even on his Wikipedia page, and the other thing being a TV movie. (For which, to be fair, he won a Daytime Emmy for “Outstanding Directing in a Children/Youth/Family Special.” That should really help him with all the rough sex scenes in Atlas Shrugged!) For three, ACK GAH GIANT FACE:
Whoa! SLOW DOWN THERE, Mega-Face. You know, I’d really think that casting someone with roughly 150% of the normal allotment of face would be a liability for this project. After all, a tremendous amount of the plot hinges on people not recognizing John Galt, or on people (spoiler!) wondering who he is. Casting someone with such a distinctively, um, huge face really changes the central question of the book, from “who is John Galt” to “who is that dude with THE GIGANTIC PORK SHOULDER FOR A HEAD???”
Anyway! Here is a fourth and even more fun thing to know about director/star of Atlas Shrugged Paul Johansson: He has the most ridiculous resume of all time. His IMDB page is a trove of wonders! Goofy, embarrassing, shameful wonders. Especially if you really hate Atlas Shrugged. For example, here’s a game I like to play at home, called, “What Is the Most Embarrassingly Terrible-Sounding Project Paul Johansson Has Ever Been Involved With?” Your options are!
(A) Wishmaster 2: Evil Never Dies. (Plot: “The evil Djinn is awakened once more, and must collect 1001 souls to begin the Apocalypse.”)
(B) Berserker. (Plot: “A warlord’s son is cursed to be reborn lifetime after lifetime and fated to love and lose until the curse is lifted.”)
(C) Highlander: The Raven. (Plot: “A female Immortal and thief tries to redeem herself with the help of an ex-cop.” And gets cancelled really, really quickly, apparently.)
(D) The Boondock Saints II: All Saints Day. (Plot: “The MacManus brothers are living a quiet life in Ireland with their father, but when they learn their beloved…” You know what? It’s a fucking Boondock Saints movie. The SEQUEL.)
(E) Toxic. (Plot: “The lives of a nightclub owner, a crime boss, a stripper, a bartender, two hitmen, a prostitute and a psychic take a turn for the worse when they are trapped in an escaped mental patient’s sinister path of madness and destruction.”)
(F) Martial Law II: Undercover. (Plot: “No summary.”)
What do you think, home viewing audience? Which of these is The Most Embarassingly Terrible-Sounding Project Paul Johansson Has Ever Been Involved With?
Haha, just kidding. The most embarrassingly terrible-sounding project Paul Johansson has ever been involved with is, of course, Atlas Shrugged.