Fancy A Full Scale Movie IN VR?

It may be closer than you think.


Sitting firmly in the category of virtual reality content, watching full length movies could open up a whole new entertainment stream for VR fans. It’s only a matter of time before we see a VR movie that takes full advantage of the technology to give us what will be a ground-breaking experience.

While a fully fledged made entirely for VR movie is some way off, we do have some early chances to see just what the experience is like.

For now that’s going to be through shorter length movies, and given it’s advisable to wear VR headsets for short periods it actually may be the shorter versions which will become more widely accepted.

Here we’ll take a look at some of the early creators of VR movie-type experiences.


New York Times

The New York Times was among the first to get into this field, having sent a million Google Cardboard headsets to subscribers so they’d be able to watch content on the NYT free VR app when it launched.

The first short movie shown was titled ‘The Displaced’ and was created to show the plight of three children caught up in the global refugee crisis.


MPC Creative – Goosebumps

MPC Creative created a VR trailer to illustrate their full scale 2D release of Goosebumps : The movie.

The short VR taster let cinema visitors get a taste of the real magic of the movie by entering a virtual reality scene.


How Directors Are Creating VR Movies

The problem with movies in virtual reality could be that there is too much going on, too much to look at. Viewers may not know where to look, or get distracted too easily from the main focus of a specific scene. This adds a fair amount of complexity to the overall process of telling the story.

To overcome this, directors need to look on the filming process with different eyes. They need to learn how to let a scene flow so that the audience intuitively know where to look, and sometimes to let it flow in a way that doesn’t get straight to the point in the way they would in a ‘normal’ movie.

This can mean trying to pre-empt where a viewer might look naturally in any given situation. And of course avoiding any footage that might cause sudden movements which could lead to nausea, although a clever amount of fast paced movement will add to the excitement. It’s the balance which is important.

On the plus side from a story-telling perspective, one of the spin-offs from viewers potentially looking in the wrong place is that they could come back to the movie time and time again. Each time maybe seeing a different perspective. If a movie Director can use that, it could lead to some very interesting creations.


So When Is The Big Stuff Coming?

That’s not clear right now. We can see the initial attempts at short films, and there will be some big difficulties in bringing longer running examples.

Ultimately it’ll be the acceptance of VR as an entertainment medium in general which determines the real success of movies. When and if the prices of headsets come down, that should enable wider take up which will drive further attention on content creation.

Jurassic Park in full VR? How exciting would that be?