The premise for creating all capstone movies at CSU Monterey was this: via a group of 1, 2 or 3 official capstone class participants, create an engaging finished product equating up to 5 minutes times the number of your pre-stated participants, let your major’s film training assist in as many ways possible, and likely even craft your film’s premise on Day 1 of the semester. Sound reasonable?
I was mostly prepared — I decided to keep a record of my dreams for about a month during the summer prior. My project’s idea — originally called “TheoR.E.M.” — was an intricate piece that went back and forth between the dream world and the real world, with three dreams. Theo was the name of the main character, and of course, rapid eye movement is what occurs during the dream sequence. Goal was to have between 10-15 minutes to play out how Theo wanted to remain asleep because their real world was far less interesting comparatively, including via dull/vivid colors depicted, etc.
Then came the part about official participants. I am still forever grateful that I had the assistance of Veronica as Producer. While she was not in my Capstone class at the time, which lead to my retitling of the film to “The Nightmare” and needing to revise the material into a five minute thriller, she helped me keep in the actual dream segment I’d had that summer, which began in a restaurant kitchen, walking down a spiral staircase from a refrigerator, and ending on a beach with an ambulance driving in the ocean.
We filmed “The Nightmare” one decade ago! Then, was touched up slightly in 2010 for festival entry.
More about “The Nightmare” here: