We have been commenting for some time that the film business has seen a great vein in virtual reality, but in this case it has been virtual reality that has sought cinema. Oculus VR opens a studio dedicated to creating experiences that move away from the world of video games.
Engadget’s interview with Brendan Iribe has revealed a parallel course that Oculus is following along with that of video games. According to Iribe, without a clear solution for control in virtual reality, there is still a long way to perfect virtual reality in video games.
“The camera has to be anchored in your head. Head movements should move the camera with absolutely perfect synchronization. Everything should work as closely as possible to the human vision. And the closer you get, the more comfortable you will feel. Suddenly, this caused us to rethink the video game world. And as we did that and started creating these demos, we started creating experiences that… they looked more like cinematic experiences than video games. And I am convinced that the lack of a control system in VR is responsible for this.”
Iribe has not detailed how many Oculus workers are involved in the Story Studio, but claims that it is a small group of ex-workers from Pixar, Industrial Light & Magic and some video game developers who have created cinematic experiences. Iribe admits that this group is like its own version of Pixar, focused on virtual reality. The filming of scenes and real actors is an enormous difficulty for its use in virtual reality, hence this group is going to focus exclusively on digitally generated content.
Lost, a short film that will debut at the Sundance festival, is the first work that Oculus is working on. As for the commercial purposes of the Story Studio, at the moment Iribe has not given more details, but he has acknowledged that the contents will be exclusive to the Rift, and that at the moment Oculus does not have a clear monetization strategy, so everyone can interpret it as they want, but it seems that the contents could be free for Rift owners.