!For the novel
* LifeImitatesArt: A number of Soviet dissidents did take menial jobs, writing in their spare time. Because they were critical of the government, the Soviets wouldn't hire them as writers. Refusing to work was considered "social parasitism" and a serious crime on the Soviet Union.
* MisaimedFandom: Wisconsin Senator and GOP Vice Presidential Candidate Paul Ryan once said, "[T]he reason I got involved in public service, by and large, if I had to credit one thinker, one person, it would be Ayn Rand." We can only wonder what work by Rand advocating service to the public he's talking about.
* NamesTheSame: Dagny's brother has nothing to do with [[{{Taggart}} a Scottish detective who solves murders]].
** Or with [[VideoGame/WingCommander a Scottish (well, actually Venusian) fighter pilot/secret agent/politician]], either.
** John Galt has no connection with [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/John_Galt_%28novelist%29: a Scottish novelist and entrepreneur]].

!For the film

* DevelopmentHell: The adaptation was in development hell for about 40 years before a group of filmmakers scraped together enough money to make a relatively faithful three-part adaptation.
** ... to make a first part of a faithful three-part adaptation. With US$ 20 million budget and US$ 4.7 million revenue after 5 weeks in theaters, the trilogy's future is questionable.
** SavedFromDevelopmentHell: There were two failed attempts in TheSeventies to turn it into a MiniSeries -- the first one fell through when Creator/AynRand wasn't able to secure final script approval, while the second one had a finished script (with Rand's approval) and was gearing up for production at Creator/{{NBC}}, but that too was halted after Fred Silverman came to power at the network. Rand started work on her own script, but [[AuthorExistenceFailure she died]] with only a third of it finished. The film rights switched hands multiple times in the ensuing decades, and at one point such stars as AngelinaJolie, BradPitt, Creator/CharlizeTheron, JuliaRoberts, Creator/AnneHathaway and RussellCrowe were all attached. All of their deals, however, fell through, and the current rights-holders rushed through an independently-financed production [[MoneyDearBoy in order to prevent the film rights from reverting to the Rand estate]]. The result, released in 2011 as ''Atlas Shrugged: Part I'', was critically thrashed and went largely ignored even by the conservatives and libertarians that its marketing aggressively courted.
* HeyItsThatGuy: Paul Larkin is [[MadMen Jimmy Barret]]! Some scientist (Dr. Potter in the book) is [[Series/BuffyTheVampireSlayer Principal Snyder]] / [[Series/StarTrekDeepSpaceNine Quark]]!
** Dr. Robert Stadler is [[Series/StarTrekVoyager The Doc / Emergency Medical Hologram / Emergency Command Hologram / Dr. Zimmerman]]!
** Who knew that Dagny Taggart would later [[Series/OrangeIsTheNewBlack go to jail for drug smuggling]]?
*** FridgeBrilliance: Decriminalization of recreational drugs is a pet cause of many Libertarian thinkers, due to it being a relatively-victimless crime and a very naturalistic supply-and-demand-driven market.
** A truly hilarious one--Quentin Daniels, the brilliant young physicist, is [[TheDrewCareyShow Oswald]] from the Drew Carey Show/[[OfficeSpace Lawrence]] from Office Space!
** Still the assistant to powerful women, Eddie Willers is [[Series/JudgingAmy Bruce]] from Judging Amy.
** Teller makes a cameo in the second film.
* TheOtherDarrin: The ''entire cast'' changes between all three films. In particular, Dagny Taggart starts out being played by Taylor Schilling in the first film, then is played by Samantha Mathis in the second film, and Laura Regan in the third.