November 3, 2017

First Look At ‘Instant Dreams’: A New Documentary About Polaroid Pictures

Featured image depicts German photographer Stefanie Schneider. 

Instant Dreams is a feature documentary by Willem Baptist (Wild boar, I’m Never Afraid!) about the fascination and love for Polaroid pictures. Among those featured is our own CTO Stephen Herchen, offering a unique look at the process behind our factory doors as he tries to unravel the secret of a lost chemical formula to this day. Take a look at the first official trailer for the feature which will have its world premiere on November 18th, and check back here then for an exclusive interview with the team behind its creation.

Stephen Herchen in the Polaroid Originals Lab

In a cinematic journey, Baptist introduces a number of quirky individuals who are connected to Polaroid in various unique ways: the German artist Stefanie Schneider, who shoots in the California desert with her last existing original Polaroid stock; New York Magazine editor Christopher Bonanos, who wrote a book about Polaroid’s history and tries to capture the relationship with his son with his instant camera; and a Japanese girl who first discovered the magic of Polaroid in Tokyo. Each of them trying to keep the instant dream alive in their own special way.

Author of Instant: The Story of Polaroid, Christopher Bonanos, and his son.

“Instant Dreams is my cinematic ode to that longing for magic, mystery and a celebration of the dreams of the future that are interwoven with this medium.” Director Willem Baptist explains. “Like instant film, we are made up of chemical connections and are full of unpredictable reactions. In Instant Dreams, the Polaroid photos are a metaphor for our relationship with reality, our longing to catch our dreams. Like one of the characters in the documentary says: “We need people like Dr. Land to dream about what we are as human beings.”

Stephen Herchen in the Polaroid Originals Lab

All photos courtesy of Pieter van Huystee Film & TV.

For news, updates, and screenings follow @instantdreamsmovie on Instagram or visit