The Oculus Rift Is Coming to Hollywood

/ Aug 25, 2014

Oculus_Rift

By Matthew DeFulgentiis

The Washington Post recently published a story about virtual reality’s possible future in Hollywood. According to the article, recent reports suggest that Facebook is now going after Hollywood studios and directors, asking them to create “Oculus Experiences” specifically for its virtual reality device, the Oculus Rift.

By putting on a virtual reality headset like the Oculus Rift, fans would (hypothetically) be able to interact with scenes or characters within the film, thus creating a more immersive experience for moviegoers.

Well, believe it or not, there have already been rumors that Hollywood directors might be willing to consider the idea. In fact, this past summer’s Comic-Con in San Diego featured “Drift with the Rift” promotions for three different projects — “X-Men,” “Pacific Rim: Jaeger Pilot,” and “Sleepy Hollow.” Fans could strap on an Oculus Rift and experience what it felt like to be immersed in a virtual reality experience.

For example, Comic-Con attendees could have pretended they were a pilot of one of the massive 250-foot-high Jaeger robots in “Pacific Rim: Jaeger Pilot.”

… Or could have experienced a scene with the Headless Horseman or Ichabod Crane from “Sleepy Hollow.”

… Or fans of “X-Men” could have experienced a three-minute, virtual reality presentation involving Professor X and Mystique.

The important factor to take away from all of this is that fans could potentially become part of the storytelling experience, when real-world actions are transformed into virtual reality actions. 3D films were designed to make the movie experience bigger and more real. If virtual reality ever came to be, it would blow 3D out of the water — allowing actual interaction with characters and plot lines.

According to the Washington Post, Facebook could potentially get people to buy the Oculus Rift headset and then follow up with a steady stream of video content offerings, transforming the Rift from a pure gaming device into a video entertainment device.

This being said, virtual reality is still not ready for its Hollywood debut. The only current steps being taken to integrate this innovative technology into the movie business is discussions of developing companion shorts for feature-length films (similar to the way Guillermo del Toro did with “Pacific Rim: Jaeger Pilot”), as well as creating other types of shorter-form entertainment content designed specifically for the Oculus Rift.

In short, though, virtual reality could change the moviegoer experience entirely as well as create a big leap forward in long-form video storytelling experiences. Only time will tell.

This article was originally published on alistdaily.com, the insiders’ source for editorial focused on entertainment marketing news, and content partner with VideoInk. It’s been lightly edited from its original version. Follow [a]listdaily on Twitter @alistdaily or subscribe for the latest news, data and more in your inbox.

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