Interview with Nightmares and Dreamscapes Producer Jeffrey Hayes
(2006-07-05)A Conversation with Producer of Stephen King's "Nightmares and Dreamscapes" Jeffrey Hayes.
Q: What is the concept behind NIGHTMARES & DREAMSCAPES?
A: Stephen Kingís short stories are extremely unique tales that lend themselves to an anthology type series, which hasnít been done for many years. Itís a massive undertaking in the sense that there is not a regular series set or leads. We are shooting eight shows that are basically each a stand-alone mini-movie. Our biggest challenge is to ensure each one has its own distinct look and feel.
Q: What is so dramatic about Stephen Kingís writing?
A: The true test of a good drama is caring about the characters that are put forth. One of the things that ties them all together is really interesting character relationships and situations in which the characters find themselves. In reading the short stories, you find yourself involved very quickly with the charactersí dilemmas, predicaments and relationships.
Q: Stephen King is known for his horror works, but many of the stories in NIGHTMARES & DREAMSCAPES are not horror. How did you select which stories to adapt?
A: Diversity is an important element in all of Stephen Kingís short stories. Each one is different in the sense that they utilize different styles; some use humor, some use horror and some use extreme drama. They all have twists and turns; some are more straight forward with a twist at the end while others start right off with the twist and carry us further into the world of his imagination. We tried to pick and choose the ones that will give the series the most diversity and the best tasting of the extraordinary canvas of short stories Stephen King has written.
Q: With the diversity and scope of this project, how do you keep the productions moving along smoothly?
A: Itís a big production. The movies range from 1938 Los Angeles to small town Oregon to a heavily laden visual effects episode where toy soldiers attack an assassin with no dialogue. Each show presents a unique production challenge. You donít see many projects like this on TV because it is so massive. You have to be very organized to shoot eight episodes back to back. But when it comes to nightmares or dreamscapes, from a producing standpoint, this project is a dream and an opportunity I donít get very often.
Q: How did you select the directors for each story?
A: The directors were chosen first and foremost because theyíve got talent. Theyíre the A list directors in the movie and television business. We also tried to marry the right script with the directorís style and shooting capacity to make things come to life.
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