Day Dream

Day Dream follows the jazz composer Billy Strayhorn as he travels to New Orleans to investigate the myths and legends surrounding Buddy Bolden, the forefather of modern jazz who spent the last 24 years of his life in a mental institution.

Funding Initiative
Diversity Development Fund

Rodney Evans

Rodney Evans has been making award-winning films for more than twenty years. He is the writer/director/producer of the feature film Brother to Brother, which won the Special Jury Prize in Drama at the 2004 Sundance Film Festival. The film had its European premiere at The Berlin International Film Festival and was nominated for two IFP Gotham Awards and Show more four Independent Spirit Awards including Best First Film, Best First Screenplay, and Best Debut Performance for Anthony Mackie. His second feature-length screenplay, Day Dream, was the first place winner of the Newfest Screenplay competition. Evans has received funding from The Guggenheim Foundation, The Creative Capital Foundation, The NY State Council on the Arts (NYSCA), and ITVS. His second narrative feature, The Happy Sad, has played at more than thirty film festivals throughout the world and had its U.S. theatrical premiere in August 2013 at the IFC Center in NYC and the Sundance Sunset Cinema in Los Angeles. It was released in major cities in the U.S. throughout 2013 and was distributed on all major digital platforms through Sundance Artist Services and Cinedigm. Show less

Other ITVS Films
Brother to Brother

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The Film

Day Dream is a feature-length musical drama that explores the lives and experiences of two legends: Buddy Bolden, the forefather of jazz who performed in New Orleans at the turn of the century and spent the last 24 years of his life in a mental institution; and Billy Strayhorn, the renowned, and openly gay composer of the 1940's and 50's who wrote many of The Duke Ellington Orchestra’s classic tunes. Alienation, improvisation, and freedom were integral to the lives of these iconoclastic men, and these themes were central motifs within the music they created. Day Dream is a stylized fantasia incorporating a surreal aesthetic that allows the two central characters to come to grips with their own internal struggles and romantic desires rather than a conventional biopic.