For all those immersive film lovers out there, there’s plenty going on in 2019, no matter where you are in the world. Based in Europe? How about the Venice International Film Festival in August, or for those down in Australia, there’s always the Byron Bay Film Festival. Or for those in Asia, one of the regions biggest events, the Busan International Film Festival (BIFF) in South Korea which takes place in October is now accepting virtual reality (VR) and augmented reality (AR) submissions.
The VR Cinema in BIFF aims to highlight one of the growing movie trends that’s exciting content creators around the world. For the 2019 event, BIFF and its partner, Barunson Ltd. are accepting not only VR and AR pieces but also holographic theatre features. Submissions will also be entered into awards where they’ll be eligible for an $18,000 USD prize pool.
Creators have until 31st August 2019 to submit their work here, with all content being exhibited at an event called VR Theatre. For those that have previously submitted their work to past editions, they must ensure at least 50 percent of the content is new to be accepted.
The non-competitive 24th Busan International Film Festival takes place from Thursday 3rd – Saturday 12th October, 2019, at the Busan Cinema Center and Haeundae area. With approximately 300 films from 70 countries being shown across 30 screens, the event is probably the most prestigious in Asia. Many of the selections have yet to be announced, but last years festival saw 195,081 people attend with 324 films shown, with Master Z: The Ip Man Legacy shown during the closing ceremony.
VR cinema has become an industry all of its own, with content creators like Felix & Paul Studios developing original films like Gymnasia or Marshall from Detroit while others such as Baobab Studios create charming interactive pieces such as Bonfire. Fable, a studio co-founded by ex-Oculus Story Studio head Edward Saatchi is at the forefront of character development through the use of AI and machine learning, creating virtual being Lucy for its animated series Wolves in the Walls.
VRFocus will continue its coverage of BIFF, reporting back with all the VR/AR nominations.