Sundance Festival throws a spotlight on VR
VR made a big splash at the Sundance Film Festival this year. Dozens of virtual experiences were available including several you can watch from home on Google Cardboard and the Gear VR. Also on display at Sundance are five 60-second, 360-degree videos which won $10,000 in Samsung’s Gear Indie “There in 60 Seconds” challenge.
A VR film by Specular Theory that looks at the controversial issue of police brutality was also screened. The Leviathan Project uses both augmented reality and virtual reality, bringing Scott Westerfeld's Leviathan trilogy to life. Wevr and Reggie Watts showed off Waves, a humorous and psychedelic musical ride through Watts’ imagination.
Oculus Story Studio previewed their third project, Dear Angelica, as well as Quill, a painting app for Touch similar to Google’s Tilt Brush for Vive that was developed by Story Studio for the production of Dear Angelica. Art director and lead illustrator Wesley Allsbrook estimates she spends 5 hours a day in the Rift with Quill, painting artwork for the project. "I love movies, but I want to stay there," she told The Verge.
Oculus also released a video showing off some of the most high-profile VR “films” that have been or will soon be released on the platform, and announced that they are going to offer a “Story Studio University” VR filmmaking workshop at NYU and USC on February 13 with a follow-up master class in April.
Goldman Sachs released 58-page report estimating the size of the VR market. A breakdown of the analysis questions some of the assumptions in the report, which estimates nearly 6 million wired headsets could ship in 2016.