• • • The individualist philosopher has fans in some unlikely countries
The Economist Altruism |Atlas Shrugged movie |Ayn Rand Institute |Atlas Shrugged |The Fountainhead |Capitalism |Paul Ryan |Yaron Brook |Image | The producer of “Atlas Shrugged Part II”, a film based on Ayn Rand’s book praising profit-makers and decrying altruism, expects to lose money on it. Harmon Kaslow hopes the movie, launched in 900 American cinemas on October 12th, will gross $10m, though he and six like-minded Randians raised $20m to pay for it. Plans for the trilogy date from 1992. “Part I”, released in 2011, cost $8m and brought in less than $5m; critics panned it as “incoherent”, “half-baked” and “stiff”. Detractors abound, but Rand’s books boast a growing following. Devotees are mostly American (the Republican vice-presidential nominee, Paul Ryan, said her books were required reading in his office). Her appeal stretches elsewhere too. Edward Hudgins of the Atlas Society says monthly non-American visits to his website have risen from 7,000 to 11,000 in two years. Yaron Brook of the Ayn Rand Institute says foreign fans are mainly in Britain, Canada, India and Scandinavia.