Can virtual reality storytelling transcend the success of cinematic film?


As virtual reality technology is breaking through to mainstream culture, it is a great time for us to consider the implications and benefits of immersive storytelling to society. In my previous blog, I talked about how storytelling in cinema has shaped our perceptions of empathy, and how the VR medium can take us even deeper. The late Roger Ebert once called movies the “greatest empathy machine in all the arts”. In a TED Talk in 2015, VR pioneer Chris Milk referred to virtual reality as the “ultimate empathy machine”. Now, it’s time to look at evidence to determine if this is really going to be the future of storytelling.

Project Empathy is a collection of experiential virtual reality stories by filmmakers and journalists. The project contains some of the most interesting methods of immersing the viewer in the protagonists’ shoes, including placing you directly in a claustrophobic solitary confinement prison…

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