"ACROSS" - A Sense of Discovery, Directing Audience Attention Successfully in VR



25 May, 2016

MISSING EVERYTHING

Since I began working on "Across" I've wrestled a lot with how to direct audience attention.  As soon as the first few moments of the film were in place I excitedly invited a friend to check it out.  It was his first experience in VR and I strapped him in eagerly anticipating his reaction to the few story beats I had working.  To my dismay, he missed it all.  Literally.  He became so enamored with the environment that he spent all of his time examining the trees and the waterfall on the tropical cliff. By the time he discovered the characters, their animations were done, the story beats had played and he had no idea what he had missed.

At first I considered that maybe this was an inevitable by-product of showing someone VR for the first time. I speculated that perhaps I should expect viewers to watch a VR film several times to discover all the details.  But when my friend finished watching the short the first time he thought he had seen all there was to see. If I wasn't standing in the room forcing him back into the experience to see the rest of it, he would have walked away and never looked back.



VR ESTABLISHING SHOTS

I decided that the issue was with the setup.  I reasoned that if the viewer had the opportunity to see everything important at the start of the short, they would know what to focus on.  With that in mind, I reworked the beginning so that

"Lost in the Dark" The Feature Film

31 March 2016



Making the short film, "Lost in the Dark" was a fantastic experience.  This year producer Dana Newell and myself have partnered with a local production company in Melbourne to turn the short into a full length feature film.  Currently we are in the process of financing the film and just this past week I finished the first draft of the script. I'm very excited to see where it goes from here. Check out the official website for the feature here: www.lostinthedarkmovie.com