There will be screenings in London this week.
Over the last few years festival like Tribeca and Sundance have showcased the intersection between virtual reality (VR) and cinema, debuting CGI pieces such as Spheres or live-action shorts like Marshall from Detroit. This week the Taiwan Film Festival is coming to the UK for the first time, and thanks to a collaboration between HTC Vive, Art Cinema and MSI, a VR pop-up cinema has been created to premiere Taiwanese VR film, The Deserted.
Created by multi-award winning Taiwanese director Tsai Ming Liang, The Deserted: “tells the surreal story of a man living in a ruined house in the mountains with two ghosts and a fish. Recovering from an illness and unable to communicate with the ghosts, his only companion is the lone fish who swims with him in the bathtub.”
The VR pop-up cinema will be at Asia House in central London, with MSI’s computer’s powering 20 HTC Vive Pro headsets at the same time, all thanks to HTC’s VR Theatre Management System. Ming-Liang collaborated with Taiwanese architect Rain Wu to create the cinema, incorporating visual clues from The Deserted’s film set, representing the area in between constant reality (the outside world) and a temporal reality (the cinema screen), a Purgatory space between the living and the dead of the film.
“Art Cinema is thrilled to work with Taiwan Film Festival and help stage the UK premiere of The Deserted by the highly-acclaimed Director Tsai Ming-Liang. This installation aims to bring the most thrilling experience to an array of audiences ranging from Film d’Auteurs lovers all the way to the most savvy explorers of virtual reality realms. Such encounters establish what 21th-century paradigms of art display and engagement are all about,” says Art Cinema founder, Myriam Blundell Phillips in a statement.
Public screenings for The Desert will begin tomorrow, 4th April, starting at 11am. There will be seven screenings per day with the exception being the last day, 8th April, where the final screening will take place at 5pm.