It was about a 30-ish film actor who had sort of JUST entered the ranks of household name movie star.
He had a little problem.
Every time he wrapped a film where he played the lead, he somehow spawned a doppelgänger. Each doppelgänger acted like the character he’d played in the film. So, one of the doppelgängers was a washed up pro ball player, one of them was a pirate, one of them was this shy housepainter, etc etc. He had like six or seven of them. But, you know, he’s a successful movie star making millions per picture, so he just kind of pays to support them, and they all live in his house with him.
This makes his life kind of complicated. He doesn’t want anyone to find out about the doppelgängers, so they just kind of hang out in his huge house in California, watching movies and playing video games and swimming in his pool and stuff. Not all of them get along.
This also has kind of put a damper on his ability to date, like, ever.
Then he’s shooting a movie in this old farmhouse, and the niece of the woman who owns it is staying there. He’s kind of entirely smitten with her, but doesn’t make a great impression.
He has to leave to go film in Singapore, but he really likes this girl. So, what does he do? HE LEAVES THE DOPPELGÄNGERS BEHIND AS THEY OFFER TO COURT HER FOR HIM.
You can totally see how this works out.
It had really interesting implications as far as fandom and identity and fetishization of film stars/inability to separate them from their characters. The guy who the dream was about had been in a couple big action blockbusters with significant fandoms and seeing the differences between those doppelgängers personalities and his own, and how people tended to treat him as if he was like the characters he portrayed, particularly those characters, was really interesting-- the girl who lived at the farmhouse commented on it when she became aware of how people treated him (them) when whey were out in public.
It also made him seriously consider the roles he took-- he couldn't play anyone mentally ill, or addicted, or with any other serious problems without the knowledge that he'd be creating a person who had to suffer with those problems. He also wouldn't play villains or killers. He was constantly frustrating his agent by turning down really plumb roles.
Now I keep thinking about, like-- in the dream, the quirkier characters were the ones he'd played when he was younger, before he understood the full implications. The pirate was the first one-- and he'd discovered it because the poor guy, believing he was a pirate, was let loose on LA on his own. He'd started seeing news reports about himself getting into a speedboat chase and he was like, what, that's not me, so he went to the police department to find out what was going on, and discovered this poor guy with no identity, no papers, and he kind of adopted him. He became more and more committed to only playing characters who would be able to lead functional lives and have a positive impact on society over the years. But I wonder what would have happened if he had played a supervillain early in his career, and then all the other doppelgangers had to get together to fight him.
I also suspect, oddly, that the dream might have been because I saw someone on tumblr do something that really disrespected an actor's privacy to the point that it made me super uncomfortable.