A new Project Morpheus powered VR experience designed to promote the forthcoming Robert Zemeckis helmed movie ‘The Walk’, has you reliving the death-defying stunt featured in the movie – walking a tightrope between New York’s World Trade Center buildings as they existed in 1974.
As well as Hollywood’s snowballing interest in immersive cinema which has emerged over the last couple of years, we’ve also seen the movie industry embrace virtual reality to promote traditional films. With recent PR focused efforts such as Wild and Interstellar, the industry clearly recognises the power of virtual reality as a medium to bring across the essence of their latest releases to the masses.
Robert Zemeckis’ latest film The Walk, which chronicles the real life events of French high-wire artist, Philippe Petit (played by Joseph Gordon-Levitt), who shot to fame for his daring high-wire walk between the Twin Towers of the World Trade Center in New York City in 1974.
The film is being promoted by Sony Pictures Entertainment using a virtual reality experience which, somewhat predictably, puts you in the shoes of Petit as he engages in his terrifying act. Wearing Sony’s Project Morpheus VR headset, the user is asked to walk off the edge of one of the Twin Towers, trying to stay balanced on a strip on the ground underneath the user’s feet. If there was ever a virtual experience which pushed sufferers of vertigo to the edge mentally, this is going to be it.
Using such marketing techniques is an interesting way to capture the essence of the movie’s subject matter, but I do wonder if such shock tactics might work to diminish the subtleties of narrative and human tension the movie will likely try to instill in the viewer. Having said that, this is precisely what movie trailers have been doing for years so perhaps not such a great departure for the industry after all.
The Walk opens in theaters in the US on October 9th.
Source: Nuke the Fridge