CBS Interactive is diving headfirst into virtual reality, starting with what they believe is the first virtual reality comedy short. The VR comedy short is set to debut this week at Cannes Lions, an International Festival of Creativity in Cannes, France.
The short film, Our Reality Is Virtual, stars Saturday Night Live’s Kenan Thompson, playing himself and comically explaining the fundamentals of virtual reality. Adweek took a sneak peak at the VR short sharing that Thompson discusses how virtual reality works to the viewer while snapping his fingers to magically appear and disappear as different character roles on a film set.
In a genre that for the most part has been overlooked in virtual reality so far, it is a breath of fresh air to see CBS Interactive test what can be done in a VR live action comedy. The role of the short film was to make viewers laugh and be a how-to shoot virtual reality inspiration piece for future VR content creators. In a festival filled with film creators and advertisers, this just might catch their attention.
CBS Interactive developed and shot Our Reality is Virtual with Uprising Creative and WEVR, who helped handle the VR technology and editing. You may know WEVR from our demo with the HTC Vive and their immersive storytellers grant program.
This is not just a one off VR project for CBS Interactive. Christy Tanner, SVP and GM of CBS Interactive, commented that they are “actively developing series in virtual reality on almost every major brand within CBS Interactive.” With CBS Interactive’s 25 brands like TVGuide.com, Last.fm, and ChowHound to work with, there are many possibilities for new virtual reality experiences.
The CBS Interactive virtual reality presentation of Our Reality is Virtual at Cannes Lions will be followed by a panel that includes Kenan Thompson, Uprising Creative’s Jeff Nicholas and Jonathan Crave (co-directors of the short), Kendell Ostrow of UTA, and founder of WEVR Anthony Batt.
Image credit: CBS Interactive
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