VR Beyond Games: Oculus Rift at Sundance’s New Frontier

on Wednesday, Jan. 29th

The Verge’s Bryan Bishop has a report from the Sundance Film Festival’s New Frontier exhibition about the cinematic experiments being conducted on the Oculus Rift, the virtual reality system that has sparked the tech world’s imagination.

Since its Kickstarter debut, much of the public focus on the Oculus Rift VR headset has been on its potential as a gaming device. The uses there are obvious, but talking to Nate Mitchell, Oculus’ VP of product, it’s clear the company sees the Rift having much broader applications in everything from immersive experiences to narrative storytelling. Opening eyes to those possibilities — and enticing other artists to dive in — was a big part of what it hoped to achieve at New Frontier. “To be invited to be at Sundance, and share the canvas and show people, ‘Hey, here are some cool things that artists are doing,’” says Mitchell. “We’re big believers in that.”

Highlights of Bishop’s report include the Sundance short 130919: A Portrait of Marina Abramović, adapted for the Rift, the documentary Clouds, and a port of musician Beck’s collaboration with director Chris Milk. In that work Beck covers David Bowie’s “Sound and Vision” while Milk provides the visuals.

If you can’t tell, I am super-jealous.

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