August 14, 1948
Thank you for your letter of July 7. I am late in answering because I have been working like mad, alternating between my novel and the movie of THE FOUNTAINHEAD. The movie is going along wonderfully. I have visited the set several times and seen some of the key scenes being shot. My impression so far is that it is better than my best hopes. If all continues as well, it will be a great picture.
I cannot say that I like the models of the buildings, but as you know, I had no part in the choice of the designer.[*]
You asked me about obtaining a 16 mm print of the finished picture for you. I am afraid that I would not be able to help you with that, because from what I hear, all the studios have a strict policy of never giving prints of pictures to anyone. I understand that even stars and directors cannot obtain them. Only Jack Warner himself could help you in this matter.
You write: “Tell me how to make $525,000 after taxes.” That’s a nice question to hear from a big financial tycoon like you. I can’t resist saying that I could tell you how to make it. It’s very simple: Bring back the system of free enterprise.
I don’t know when we will be able to come to New York, but I do hope we will see you the next time you are here.
With best regards to both of you from both of us,
*The on-screen drawings of Roark’s buildings were done by the film’s art director, Edward Carrere. In a later interview, AR commented: “[Director Henry] Blanke knew enough to know that they were pretty bad. And he took my advice on one issue. I told him since they are so awful, hold them on the screen just long enough to show that it’s a modern building and cut it off before people can see the details, which he did. As it is, professional architects criticized it enormously. And with justice.” In 1967, Carrere won a shared Academy Award for Best Art Decoration–Set Decoration for Camelot.