What would you do if you could escape to anywhere you could possibly imagine? What would happen if that escape became so enticing, you never wanted to wake up? Ben, a grief-stricken husband lost in life, has become enthralled in the ultimate escapism fantasy: the chance to see his long-gone wife again at a cutting-edge virtual simulation centre. But fantasy comes at a price, and Ben’s rapidly declining funds now finally awaken him to the sickening and corrupt fixation he’s become so contented with.

  • Tom Jancso
    Son, Night Shift
  • Adam Tanner
    Son, Night Shift
  • Joshua Fowler
    Becalmed, Spoonmaker
  • Georgia Immins
    Son, Night Shift, Peach Fuzz
  • Jabari Ngozi
    Key Cast
  • Jazz Sanders
    Key Cast
  • Antony Sands
    Key Cast
  • Project Type:
    Short, Student
  • Genres:
    Sci-Fi, Drama
  • Runtime:
    10 minutes 45 seconds
  • Completion Date:
    January 16, 2023
  • Production Budget:
    682 GBP
  • Country of Origin:
    United Kingdom
  • Country of Filming:
    United Kingdom
  • Language:
  • Shooting Format:
  • Aspect Ratio:
  • Film Color:
  • First-time Filmmaker:
  • Student Project:
    Yes - University of Gloucestershire
Director Biography - Tom Jancso

Based in the West Midlands of the United Kingdom, directing is something I've been obsessive and passionate for since I first started making films in secondary school. I thrive on pushing unique and inventive concepts, while keeping that raw and relatable human element at the heart of a story. Combining a slick, visual edge with each narrative, I'm always on the hunt to show people something new.

Graduating with a Batchelor's Degree in Film Production at the University of Gloucestershire, I'm now continuing to develop my own projects as a freelance writer & director.

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Director Statement

‘Daydream’ explores society’s yearning desire to escape the mundanity of life, evolving into the increasing obsession and addiction we have with unrealistic fantasies. This Sci-fi drama centres around a grieving husband lost in life, who becomes enthralled in the ultimate way out, leading to a sickening fixation that consumes his life (that being a simulated recreation of the life he could have had with his wife). He characterises how we, as a society, view “escaping” as essentially retreating into media (films, TV, social media) which makes us comfortable or nostalgic, but offers no true progression or accomplishment in our lives. We distract and avoid our life in favour for escaping somewhere simpler. ‘Daydream’ highlights our fixation with chasing idealistic, unhealthy distractions and inspires us to seek value and satisfaction in the life we already have. Our life is not a fantasy, it is a reality that we must appreciate.

A harrowing contrast between fantasised, exotic, and blissful simulated worlds, against an unfulfilling, miserable reality the character/s live in will parallel our own world: one in which we dream to escape to a happier existence. Comparable influences containing this subtext include “Ready Player One”, ‘The Matrix’, ‘Total Recall’, and ‘Reminiscence’. The world of ‘Daydream’ is shown through Ben’s eyes: a cold, lifeless and depressing existence, akin to bleak futurism. It is glimpse of humanity when we stop dealing with our issues and instead choose to forget them. What if we never wanted to wake up in the morning and face the day? It presents a not-too-distant future wherein technology is and has become a reliance for all of us, with ‘Black Mirror’ serving as a key reference both thematically, as well as stylistically.

My passion to make this film derides from my want to question the idea of escapism in the modern world. I wanted to inspire the viewer to appreciate the richness of life, as well as understand the hardship of letting go of what we crave. As well as this, I wanted to make a film that proposes what kind of technology could emerge in the near future, and how increasingly reliant as a society we are with it. In a way, I wanted to warn the audience of this impending reality we may come to face, while making them recognize its similarities with the world we already live in now.