Felix & Paul Studios can be revealed as the creators of the Introduction to VR 3D 360° virtual reality cinematic experience commissioned by Samsung and Oculus to come bundled with the Samsung Gear VR.
Users of the Samsung Note 4 powered device Gear VR will be transported high above the clouds and land on the summit of Haleakala; join a nomadic Mongolian family in their yurt and take in a satellite’s view of Earth from outer space. All of this as part of a new 360 3D VR production entitled “Introduction to VR” created by pioneering film-makers Felix & Paul. The 2 minute experience aims to provide a taste of what Gear VR owners can expect from virtual reality cinema, which is being heavily targeted by Samsung and Oculus in terms initial content.
The team used their propriety stereoscopic 360 capture technology on location with some of the CG sequences supplied by Gravity SFX Wizards Framestore. This experience is one of three stereoscopic 360 productions produced by Felix & Paul Studios that will bundled with Gear VR – Strangers with Patrick Watson and Zarkana (the Cirque du Soleil experience).
For Zarkana, Felix & Paul Studios directed a special aerial strap performance specially designed for Virtual Reality where the viewer is on stage within the world of Zarkana, created by Cirque du Soleil. The entire production process took three weeks and the title also makes use of positional audio to guide the viewer where to look at key moments.
Felix and Paul have always been guarded about how their stereoscopic 360 camera recording technology works. All Felix can reveal is:
“Our overall approach (hardware and software) is very different to that of the other players currently in the field. Everything on our camera system was custom designed and built and we do not use existing off-the-shelf cameras like GoPros or RED cameras. Our post-production process was elaborated in harmony with our camera technology and goes totally hand-in-hand with it.”
Felix & Paul Studios are now working on a production with a Hollywood film studio as well as a branded content project. Felix tells me “Both projects allow us to explore live-action VR in a more storytelling-driven perspective than our last projects.” Paul spoke at the Film and Storytelling in VR panel the recent Oculus Connect event where he was joined by John Gaeta (Creative Director, New Media and Experiences @ Lucasfilm) and Kim Libreri (CTO @ Epic Games).