Private Project

Daydream Screener

Dreams are the foundation on which success becomes a reality... but success is subjective. While enjoying gradual but medial success in life, our main character (The Processor) cannot shake the feeling that he is destined for more. Without an outlet for achievement through the established society, he resorts to a gruesome and deadly black market trade to satisfy his hunger for success. Where do you see yourself in ten years?

  • Richard Ramirez
  • Richard Ramirez
  • Richard Ramirez
  • Alan Freytag
  • Richard Ramirez
    Key Cast
    "The Processor"
  • Lizzete Zunica
    Key Cast
    "The Superior"
  • Project Type:
    Experimental, Short
  • Genres:
    Horror, Drama, Thriller
  • Runtime:
    18 minutes 42 seconds
  • Completion Date:
    May 29, 2019
  • Production Budget:
    2,000 USD
  • Country of Origin:
    United States
  • Country of Filming:
    United States
  • Language:
  • Shooting Format:
    HDV, 4k,
  • Aspect Ratio:
  • Film Color:
  • First-time Filmmaker:
  • Student Project:
Director Biography - Richard Ramirez

Richard Ramirez has worked as an artist and sculptor on feature films, including special effects. His work as a production artist has brought people closer to the films they love; from fabricating collectibles and prop restoration, to preparing materials for Disney Land Star Wars Theme Parks. His transition from man behind the curtain to behind the camera is one spawned by his love of cinema and art. Some of his creative inspirations include Ray Harryhausen, Bernie Wrightson, Stan Winston, David Cronenberg, Fritz Lang, and John Carpenter. A lover of genre films, he enjoys such staples like Comedy and Horror, able to enjoy films from Black Orpheus to The Deadly Spawn. Tales of horror are especially reflective of humanity, where our fears are important to acknowledge, as are the contradictions that life is bound by; light and dark, life and death, etc. Through understanding these do we ever hope to make it through the unknown that terrifies us all and the known that horrifies us.

His passion for cinema is not going away anytime soon and he already has a feature film project underway with some Oscar winning special effects artists signed on to bring it to life.

Add Director Biography
Director Statement

We wanted to tell a story of a horror that was relatable, unsettling, but ultimately very human. In this version we jump we look at how a person develops over time and in this story, ultimately into a monster. Their ambition and thoughts changing and adapting with time and not always for the best. While what he believes is not inherently "evil" it is his perspective and execution of those ideas (not to mention his justification) that are the most unnerving. Looking at this monster's twisted views on full display. One of the horrifying aspect that was pushed is how this truly pathetic character reflects how many people will twist any logic to justify pretty much any action, no matter how awful or monstrous these actions may be. The other very real horror we play with is its ending, fantasy. Next to calling into question what the viewer has seen, this pushes the notion of "Daydreaming" as while neither good nor bad plays with the haunting questions of their gravity and the notion that you may never truly know someone.

Passion will only take you so far. When production problems arise, as they inevitably will, finding creative solutions is key. Sometimes finding creative solutions is thinking of how to make the best of a bad situation, turning an obstacle into an opportunity, sometimes it's how to rally your crew to victory, all while keeping your vision alive. Often these have to be thought of on the spot at a moment’s notice. On DAYDREAM, after the second camera man had dropped out/doubled booked at the last minute, causing an already tight nighttime shooting schedule with special effects to be even tighter and more intense. This led to most of these scenes being done quickly in only one to two takes in an effort to conserve time and alleviate tension from the crew. Because these scenes were plan and shot so tight, there was hardly any left on the cutting room floor. One the greatest assets has been his crew. DAYDREAM was a lean machine of a project, using a crew of only two people for all of act one of the film. A good crew brings the best out of each other, especially the director who marveled as the crew pulled off miracles on a regular basis. They were worthy of throwing a ticket tape parade and were told as much. Alan Freytag has been a long-time creative collaborator with Richard Ramirez and is another example of bringing the best out of each other. Without Alan's belief in his ability, DAYDREAM would not exist.

Lizzete is a fantastic actress. She really was able to sell the fear, well as she could the authoritative position of a higher up in a company setting. She took direction well, a positive and fun person on set, and was very enthusiastic about the project. She even helped applying her own makeup for the shed scenes. Truly a great actress.

The final scene in the "office building" was actually shot first. We tried so hard to get an actual office floor to shoot on; we contacted every type of business in town, even managed to get the City Manager to help us find a place, but alas we ended up having to shoot guerrilla style in, well, not an actual office building. though not the ideal situation, we were able to shoot the scene without any stress on our actors or crew and managed not to get the desired shots.

All of the "montage" was done over a couple of days, cramming as much as we could into each day. This involved in depth planning ahead of time, as well as spontaneity.

Almost all of this short film was shot via a hand held camera.

We shot so much for act one that this is still a faction of what was shot. There are whole scenes that were left out for time, Including a fish saving scene & a construction site scene with additional actors.

The majority of time goes into planning and doing the less glamorous, but essential, side of film making. Be it paperwork, crunching numbers, phone calls, etc, one your job as a filmmaker is simply getting the job done. From conception of an idea though post-production and beyond, detailed planning can make a shoestring budget work.

This led to the Director constructing a bedside editing bay to increase efficiency, where he would wake up early and immediately start editing till late that night. This was repeated till editing was done.

Many of the gore and other sounds heard were made in post production. These even include the haunting atmospheric/musical. A good potion of which were made by recording sounds or the director's mouth and hours of intense/goofy Foley work in a garage.

Scoring the film was a task he did not seek out, but recognizing a film's score is just as important as any character, setting, or story, he composed DAYDREAM's score in a few days, with 78 to 84 layers of music in total, averaging five layers for any given scene. Atmosphere was crucial to the short and was one of the big driving forces behind the score. Each version of DAYDREAM has a custom score made for that version.