Disney is at it again, diving head first into the VR world and this time they are working on a new VR film. Last year Disney created a short VR film called Cycles which is premiering at the 2019 Sundance Film Festival in Utah.
The new VR film will be directed by Jeff Gipson who also directed Cycles. One big part of this movie that may help it with Disney lovers is the fact that Gipson has full use to use any characters from the Disney universe in the new VR movie.
The new piece will be between three and five minutes long but besides that and the use of past Disney characters, not much information about the new VR film has surfaced. There is hope though that more information will be released and we can see the new film in the foreseeable future, especially since Cycles was created in just four months.
Cycles is about building a home and the incidents that take place inside of them. It is a good idea for VR since the technology is mainly used in one location and that what Cycles does.
This isn’t the first time Disney has explored using VR though. In the last few years the company has revealed several games and experiences that include apps like a Coco tie-in movie and the Oculus Rift exclusive Marvel: Powers United VR. Disney also has their own VR experience in Downtown Disney at their California location. Last year they launched a Wreck-It Ralph location based VR experience. The company also owns its own VR animation tool but it hasn’t been released to the public.
We still don’t know if these VR films will be able to be viewed in home yet either. The studio is open to the idea so hopefully in the future we will see Disney bringing VR experiences inside of our homes as well.
Cycles was a huge deal for Disney since it was the first major studio to use the power of VR to enhance storytelling. This was the first time that director Jeff Gipson had use the technology himself. The story was inspired by Gipson’s childhood and spending time with his grandparents in their home and then helping them move to an assisted-living facility.
“We wanted to create a story in this single place and be able to have the viewer witness life happening around them,” Gipson said in a statement. “It is an emotionally driven film, expressing the real ups and downs, the happy and sad moments in life.”
Gipson joined the Disney team in 2013 and has worked as a lighting artist on films like Frozen, Zootopia, and Moana.
“VR is an amazing technology and a lot of times the technology is what is really celebrated,” Gipson said. “We hope more and more people begin to see the emotional weight of VR films, and with ‘Cycles’ in particular, we hope they will feel the emotions we aimed to convey with our story.”