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Jerry Biggers

Duncan Scott exits Atlas 3, resumes Rand documentary

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The following message from Duncan Scott was received a short while ago.

Project Update #8: "Dangerous Woman" update

Posted by Duncan Scott ♥ Like

Dear Kickstarter Supporters,

Here’s a new update on our documentary, The Most Dangerous Woman in America (previously titled Inside the Mind of Ayn Rand): We resumed work on Dangerous Woman several months ago (following the completion of my work on Atlas Shrugged, Part 3). The main focus has been finalizing the shooting script for the documentary. As you can imagine, since we are presenting the spectrum of Ayn Rand’s ideas, and the controversy those ideas generate, it’s been a massive undertaking, but we recently completed a 94 page draft and are now revising and tweaking it.

Although video editing usually doesn’t begin until after principal photography, we have already started editing segments of the documentary. Because we previously filmed, or acquired, over 40 hours of footage and thousands of still photos for the project, we recently began assembling selected sequences, mainly to test concepts and techniques.

When the script is finalized, and the remaining production funds are in hand, we will begin filming the new sequences. It is full steam ahead at this point!

I’ve been very grateful for your patience during the long delays on this project. Almost all of my work in recent years has been devoted to finding compelling ways to adapt Ayn Rand’s ideas for mass media with the goal of bringing those ideas to a wider public. And that was certainly my goal in working many months on the scripts for Atlas Shrugged, Parts 2 and 3.

The Atlas Shrugged films did result in a two year delay in our Dangerous Woman documentary, and so I believe you should be made aware that, just prior to principal photography of Atlas Shrugged Part 3 this past January, I decided that I could no longer support the production in the direction it was headed due to creative differences with the producers. I resigned from the production team at that time. I can’t go into more detail because of confidentiality agreements.

Returning to Dangerous Woman though has completely energized me. I’m excited to see the film taking shape as an entertaining, accessible and faithful examination of Rand’s ideas. Look for another progress report in a few months.

Thank you again for your support and encouragement.

All the best,

Duncan Scott

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I look forward to it. Rand's life is more intriguing and thrilling than some of her fiction. I can only hope that, unlike Ayn Rand: A Sense of Life, Mr. Scott's film will not omit essential information about Rand's relationship with the Brandens.

It is unfortunate that the title is also used by another documentary film.

Edit:

Now that I've done some digging, I see that Mr. Scott was not at all pleased with A Sense of Life's glossing over of key figures in Rand's life. Regarding Rand's inner circle of the Brandens and some others not mentioned in SOL, he writes:

These are the people-- writers, philosophers, economists, artists—who were the first to embrace the core ideas of Ayn Rand’s novels and envision the possibilities for a philosophy that could change the world. Many, if not most of these individuals were deliberately omitted from SOL for the crime of thinking for themselves. (October 19, 2004)

Edited by Francisco Ferrer

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You don't have to worry about information on the Brandens being left out. Duncan was a close friend of both Nathaniel and Barbara Branden (who also gave many talks at The Atlas Society's functions.

I think you may be confusing the films. Ayn Rand: A Sense of Life was a project of the Ayn Rand Institute (not the Atlas Society). But all three Atlas Shrugged films are owned by John Aglialoro, a trustee of TAS. On the other hand, ARI has no participation or endorsement of the Atlas Shrugged films.

The quote you give from Duncan Scott is referring to the earliar ARI documentary. But Duncan was wotking on a totally separate project, Inside the Mind of Ayn Rand (now apparently retitle The Most Dangerous Woman...." (A title, BTW, that was used about ten years ago for a biography of Madalyn Murray O'Hair).

Duncan was referring in his email that i included to his work on Atlas Shrugged, Part 3. For some reason (which he did not disclose) he left that project before it was completed, and has now resumed work on The Most Dagerous Woman documentary.

Correction: I think that the book about Madalyn Murray O'Hair was actually titled, not the "most dangerous woman," but "The Most Hated Woman in America".

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Now that's exciting! Thanks Jerry for the heads up.

Getting AR's ideas to the masses, via a movie.

AS 1 & 2 didn't do it.

marketing

marketing

marketing ie: the promotion of goods/ services

-Joe

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You don't have to worry about information on the Brandens being left out. Duncan was a close friend of both Nathaniel and Barbara Branden (who also gave many talks at The Atlas Society's functions.

I think you may be confusing the films. Ayn Rand: A Sense of Life was a project of the Ayn Rand Institute (not the Atlas Society). But all three Atlas Shrugged films are owned by John Aglialoro, a trustee of TAS. On the other hand, ARI has no participation or endorsement of the Atlas Shrugged films.

The quote you give from Duncan Scott is referring to the earliar ARI documentary. But Duncan was wotking on a totally separate project, Inside the Mind of Ayn Rand (now apparently retitle The Most Dangerous Woman...." (A title, BTW, that was used about ten years ago for a biography of Madalyn Murray O'Hair).

Duncan was referring in his email that i included to his work on Atlas Shrugged, Part 3. For some reason (which he did not disclose) he left that project before it was completed, and has now resumed work on The Most Dagerous Woman documentary.

Correction: I think that the book about Madalyn Murray O'Hair was actually titled, not the "most dangerous woman," but "The Most Hated Woman in America".

Actually, I understood that Scott's documentary is a new project altogether. I only worried (initially) that the director would, in the footsteps of Michael Paxton, have to omit verboten material about ex-Rand associates in order to procure valuable images from the estate of Ayn Rand.

I am hopeful now that even without such material Mr. Scott can provide a balance and critical distance that the earlier ARI-approved film did not.

There is already a recent film entitled The Most Dangerous Woman in America. It is about Mary Mallon. A book about Mother Jones is also subtitled The Most Dangerous Woman in America.

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Was Ayn Rand: a Sense of Life an ARI project? My understanding is ARI gave the director its approval and full access to its archives but didn't actually produce it. The movie didn't entirely omit NB and BB, though it downplayed them implausibly.

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