The Digital Hollywood VR panel touched on creative processes, storytelling in a virtual space and the future of VR.
Before an audience of VR enthusiasts, creators, and storytellers, our Head of RSA VR, Jen Dennis and Director David Karlak joined an esteemed panel of VR creators (Kalan Ray – Mission ISS, Danilo Moura and Christian Laursen – LOOT ) that was moderated by Tubefilter columnist, David Bloom.
To kickoff the discussion, the panel narrowed in the creation of RSA VR’s latest project, Alien Covenant: In Utero, executive produced by Ridley Scott and directed by David Karlak. Jen Dennis shared a bit about the creative process and decisions that were made in the creation of In Utero, “Originally, we were going to shoot it practically on the set. I think when we decided that we were going to do this as a POV of the Alien, that became less important. We did, however, go in and do full scans of the set, as well as programming and created the assets through that workflow. That’s when it came to David [Karlak], and he put his spin on how he wanted this to happen.”
When asked about how In Utero fit in with the many branded pieces of content, like “Prologue: Last Supper” and “Meet Walter” as a part of Ridley Scott’s larger vision, David chimed in, “From the very beginning Ridley Scott was involved. Just the very fact that he allowed this project to happen as a part of the marketing for his film is a testament to the fact that bold ideas are the ones that cut through the noise.” David continued, “Once we started embarking on this journey of bringing this piece to life, we met with Ridley multiple times as we progressed. I always was asking the questions like ‘Does a Neomorph have a heartbeat?’ ‘How quickly does it gestate?’ And while a lot of it was up to us to invent, we would always go back to Ridley to make sure everything fit into his canon.”
On the topic of the evolution of VR, Jen explained, “Two years in real life is, like, 14 years in VR.” The panel continued on to discuss the progression of VR technology and how to “future proof” your VR experience. “I think it comes down to using the best data possible,” said David. “So, with In Utero, we used the assets from the film. So all the super high-resolution doubles, the Med Bay, all those digital assets were the best available.”
When asked where the future of VR is headed, David was quick to answer. He predicted that it’s all about, “location-based VR.” David continues, “Capturing an audience is becoming harder and harder on a flat screen, that’s why I think the future is really leaning towards location-based VR experiences.”
For now though, you can experience the terrifying Alien: Covenant In Utero? in the comfort of your own home. “We’re everywhere!” said David. “Oculus Rift, Samsung Gear, HTC Vive, Playstation VR, there’s even a Facebook 360-video online you can experience.”
Become a Neomorph, watch the 360-video for Alien:Covenant In Utero above, and find it, as David says “everywhere” on a headset nearest you. Keep up with the latest in RSA VR here and David Karlak’s projects here.