Oculus is vying to prove that Virtual Reality (VR) is not only meant for video games as it?is also capable of engaging audiences in movies.
The Associated Press (AP) has reported that the $2-billion Facebook acquired company, Oculus, allowed select media to experience Henry, a movie that fully uses the capabilities of VR. The movie is being made by Oculus? internal production company, Story Studio.
AP reported that they were made to strap on an Oculus headset to watch a 10-minute narrative experience of Henry, a lonely hedgehog who is celebrating his birthday. Upon wearing the Oculus headset, they were transformed inside Henry?s house which?allowed them to roam their eyes in a 360-degree vision to see the characters and the surroundings. The VR experience also enabled viewers to?have a face to face encounter with the characters, giving them a feeling as if they were inside Henry?s house fully immersing them especially when Henry directly looked directly at audiences.
Henry Director Ramiro Lopez Dau told AP that while Henry is a completely passive experience that doesn?t require controllers, it still gives off a unique experience as you could tilt your head to look around surroundings. He also touted that Henry could directly gaze at all audience?s eyes? no matter where they were in the room.
?We use those moments when he?s happy or sad to look at you no matter where you?re standing,? he said.
According to Wired,?experiencing Henry felt like a ?voyeur? as he felt that he was spying on someone.
?It’s also unnerving; the first time I tried an early demo, I immediately felt like a voyeur, as if I was spying on this poor hedgehog during his sad solo birthday,? Wired reported. ?But in VR, the whole point is that you?re meant to feel as though you?re physically there with Henry?and as Unseld (Story Studio?s creative director) pointed out to me when I took off the goggle, it?s weird if Henry doesn?t recognize someone sitting on his living room floor.
Oculus Founder Palmer Luckey told AP that their Oculus VR movie Henry isn?t rivaling other Hollywood studios but is demonstrating the capabilities of VR in hopes of inspiring studios and production companies create similar content.
The animation tool of the Unreal Engine 4 was used to make the movie, Wired reported.
A trailer for Henry is said to be released later today.