Arrival, the critically-acclaimed science fiction film that took home the sound editing award at the Oscars this year, was recently released on Blu-ray. The film follows a linguist professor who is tasked with interpreting the language of alien visitors on Earth. To coincide with the Blu-ray release in February, Reel FX and Paramount Pictures teamed up to drop viewers right into the alien’s lair in the Arrival VR – 360 Immersive Experience.
Using VR technology, the 360 Immersive Experience provides users with the ability to interact in a 1st person capacity within the video, using aspects and footage from the film. Every detail, from a flashlight on the ground to floating wires is captured in the 360-degree video. Paramount provided Reel FX Creative Director Colin McGreal with a full library of ink symbols that were seen throughout the film. This was one of the many components the Reel FX team used along with several other moments from the film to keep the immersive experience as close to what audiences saw on the big screen as they could.
“Our challenge was to seamlessly weave disparate visual and audio moments of the film into a single experimental journey”, said McGreal. One of the main goals according to McGreal was to “recreate and preserve the elegant design and tone that made the film unique.” This is following a trend of films combining forces with the VR industry as a new way of promoting a film project while also giving viewers a new experience, so that, though the Oscars might have taken place a few weeks ago, and Arrival released in November of last year, filmgoers can still stumble upon the picture as might not have been the case even a year ago.