Next week sees the start of the annual Sundance Film Festival in Park City, Utah, bringing filmmakers together from across the globe for the industry’s first big event of the year. As VRFocus has seen over the previous few years, there’s been a growing contingent of immersive films appearing thanks to initiatives like the New Frontiers exhibition. Recently, award-winning content studio RYOT has revealed its slate of XR projects debuting during the festival.
Premiering as part of the festival’s New Frontier programme will be Gloomy Eyes, A Jester’s Tale and The Dial.
- Gloomy Eyes – “The animated virtual reality series Gloomy Eyes, directed by Jorge Tereso and Fernando Maldonado, chronicles a remote town where being a zombie is against the law. Like all of his kind, young Gloomy is hiding in the forest, away from bounty hunters. But Gloomy is different. While bitterness plagues the city, he strives to find a balance in his mysterious dual nature.”
- A Jester’s Tale – “Experience the viscerality of a psychologically taxing children’s fable merging with the physicality of our world as you come home cold and tired, just in time for a bedtime story. In this interactive augmented reality narrative, directed by Asad J. Malik, the characters are just hollow meshes, but maybe so are you.”
- The Dial – “The Dial, an interactive narrative that combines augmented reality and projection mapping, is centred around a woman who smashes through the stone wall outside her family home. This visual tale unravels the formerly wealthy family’s emotional underbelly and what happened that fateful night, as seen from shifting perspectives where you control time by moving your body.
All three films have been created with help from Unity, with the software company also sponsoring the Sundance Film Festival. “Unity doesn’t exist to create games or other commercial content. We exist to provide creators with the best real-time platform to achieve their artistic vision,” said Isabelle Riva, Head of Made with Unity, Unity Technologies in a statement. “Just last year, ‘SPHERES,’ a project created using Unity, was acquired at the 2018 Sundance Film Festival for seven figures – a critical moment for immersive films and validation that Unity is enabling unprecedented success for creators pushing the boundaries of what is possible in entertainment.”
The Sundance Film Festival will begin on Thursday, 24th January and run through to Sunday 3rd February 2019. For further updates on immersive media at the event, keep reading VRFocus.