Behind The Scenes

Shooting for The Art of Dreaming took place in the spring and summer of 2011, in over a dozen locations around NYC, outdoors and indoors, exotic and mundane. The shoot involved costumes, masks, practical and digital effects, elaborate sets, and even a Butoh dancer.

One of the more unusual shooting locations was Fort Totten, a former army base turned national park, in Queens, New York. The crumbling, haunted structures of the Civil War era fort were ideal for capturing the surreal dreamscape Maya Rivers finds herself lost in.

Butoh dancer Dages Keates was recruited to play the Insect Queen, one of the strange creatures Maya encounters in her dream world. Dages’ unearthly gestural movements and commanding presence brought to life the eerie power of this mysterious being.

The film was shot with the Canon 7D by Director of Photography Che Broadnax. Che played both painter and psychologist, using light, movement and composition to create subtle effects charting Maya’s journey as her dream and waking life begin to jumble and merge.

Throughout the production, everyone, from actors, to Art Department, to composer and sound designers, was encouraged to think about their own dream life to understand how sound, sight, and emotions really work in our dreams. Whenever a problem arose with no easy solution, the answer was found by asking, what are dreams like?

Writer-director Bob DeNatale was inspired by his own experiments with lucid dreaming, and his experiences surrounding the death of his mother. His initial spark of inspiration, though, was wanting to explore his take on the classic fairly tale motif of Beauty and the Beast.


Contact: info (at) theartofdreamingfilm (dot) com