Continuing its diversification from pure, cinematic experiences, IMAX has announced that it’s partnering with Warner Bros. to bring its forthcoming superhero movie franchises to virtual reality via multiplexes and it’s dedicated VR centres.
Update (11/26/17): First teased back earlier this year, the ‘Justice League VR’ experience is now available in select IMAX locations worldwide, including dedicated VR locations in Toronto, LA, NYC, Shanghai, and Manchester. The interactive experience uses the HTC Vive and features the opportunity to choose from one of six superhero missions: Batman, Superman, Aquaman, Wonder Woman, The Flash, and Cyborg. IMAX says the experience takes place in 25 minute scheduled blocks with a total runtime of 12 minutes. Although prices vary by location, it comes in around $12. For reservations, click here.
Original article (04/01/17): This year saw the opening of IMAX’s first dedicated virtual reality ‘Experience’ center, through which the firm – which made its name via super-sized cinematic experiences – intends to diversify its entertainment offering to include immersive VR gaming and cinematic experiences. We’ve already seen partnerships with developers and
Now, IMAX has announced it’s working with movie studio Warner Bros. to “help usher in” their forthcoming assault on the superhero movie genre with immersive experiences to tie in with new movies like the first Justice League movie and future offerings like Aquaman and at least one other unnamed franchise.
“It’s fitting that with Imax and Warner Bros.’ shared history of launching Hollywood movies in Imax theatres, today we’re entering into our first studio deal to bring VR to the multiplex,” said Imax Corp chief executive Richard L. Gelfond to The Drum.
As of now, no specifics as to the nature of the experiences are available – whether they’ll take the form of passive 360 videos or more substantial realtime, interactive rendered experiences. Nor do we know what VR headset the content will be targeted at, with IMAX utilising both HTC’s Vive and Starbreeze’s 210 degree StarVR hardware in their VR centres.
Warner Bros. seems to be accelerating its efforts for VR as an entertainment platform. Just last week another of the studio’s major blockbuster hopes for 2017, the Spielberg helmed Ready Player One, was to get multiple piece of VR content via HTC and it’s SteamVR powered Viveport platform later this year.
“Ready Player One is one of the most anticipated movies in the world, and has tremendous potential to engage and entertain the worldwide market, showcasing the transformative nature of VR, and what it can and will be,” said Rikard Steiber, President of Viveport. “Vive is delivering on the promise of VR and continues to be the most advanced and immersive VR experience available to consumers, and we’re thrilled to be partnering with Warner Bros. to bring these experiences to consumers, on all platforms, around the globe.”