There has been talk of making movies in VR format for years. While you can find many YouTube videos showing how to convert movies into a VR format, we seem to be no closer than 10 years ago to making a movie in VR. Yes, there have been VR movie entries in film festivals like Sundance, but the reviews are mixed…to put it nicely. The story line may intrigue, but implementing the technology is still sub-par.
This is rather frustrating for those who have held out hope for years that this would come to fruition and we would have full-blown VR movies. Some are beginning to doubt that it will ever happen and are happy enough for now to just convert movies already made into the VR format. If this is where the focus will stay, in keeping current with the abilities to convert and the devices this is compatible with, then progress in the other arena will continue to move slower than it otherwise could.
The biggest obstacle most people see is how the movie would be shown and how it would be viewed. Another point of concern, or debate if you will, is how much the viewer would be interacting with the actors/actresses and to what degree. Would the viewer just be an inactive viewer in a VR world? If so, what’s the point? We already are inactive viewers in the movie, just in a 2D kind of way. And if the viewer does interact, to what extent? Could we stand where one actor is standing to give the impression that yet another actor is talking to us directly? Instead of the actor we are standing “inside” of? If we get punched, can we punch back? Possibly changing the written and directed course of the movie?
For as many people who want movies to be made in a VR format, you have just as many opinions as to how deep it should or should not go. The ones who want this to be a movie version of existing games are satisfied with what is currently available. Others want the full Monty. They want a VR experience that is also a bona fide movie. So, while this may be a want that will satisfy the curiosity in us all, ( “What would it really be like?”), it is certainly not something that can bring out people’s’ creative best. This is where many people say VR should go when it comes to the arts. A practical creative outlet, if you will.
As it stands right now, movies made in a VR format are something that does not have the mass appeal it takes to light a fire under the developers in order to make it happen. The interest is there, it just does not have the appeal needed. Gaming, conversions, and immersing oneself in a VR world in order to create stand-alone art seems to be where the mass appeal is at the moment.