Frontline Releasing Second Virtual Reality Documentary

Frontline and Brown Institute will be releasing the virtual reality documentary in stages, with the full film debuting March 1st.

The PBS investigative series Frontline has teamed up with the Brown Institute to explore virtual reality (VR) journalism in their upcoming series of 360-degree Facebook videos titled, “On the Brink of Famine.”

Frontline shared the first story of the documentary series on their Facebook page (video below), giving you a look inside the hunger crisis of war-torn South Sudan.

This is the second time the long-running series has produced a film entirely for VR. Back in October, Frontline took us on a VR origin story journey of the Ebola virus that became a major epidemic in 2014.

On the Brink of Famine is an immersive look at life in South Sudan, where more than 2.8 million people are going hungry and at least 40,00 are near starvation as a result of the devastating civil war. The documentary comes at an urgent time considering a recent report from the United Nation warns that the people of South Sudan are facing unprecedented levels of food insecurity, with numbers expected to peak this summer.

This first minute plus long 360° clip takes you on a mission to deliver food by a plane to those trapped in the swamplands of South Sudan. Since the documentary will be released on Facebook in stages, we can expect the second 360° video to come to Frontline’s Facebook page later this week. In the next video, viewers will visit the country’s largest displaced persons camp – where more than 120,000 people have fled to escape the violence.


“We’ve been exploring VR’s potential for journalism for some time, and we’re so proud of the work this team has done to tell a critically important story in a new way,” said Frontline executive producer Raney Aronson-Rath, who oversaw the show’s first virtual reality documentary, Ebola Outbreak: A Virtual Journey.

The full documentary will include a look inside a clinic where Doctors Without Borders cares for children suffering from malnutrition and will be available on Frontline’s Facebook page starting Tuesday, March 1. The film will also be released for Oculus at a later date.

About the Scout

Jonathan Nafarrete

Jonathan Nafarrete is the co-founder of VRScout.

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