We’ve seen such a rapid increase in the pace of technological development in the beginning of the 21st century that there aren’t too many things that really take us by surprise. The movie Avatar, with its innovative use of CGI, was one of the few exceptions, but what’s the next big thing in film technology that could potentially take us by surprise? That might be up for debate, but a strong case can be made that it will be the growth and development of the Virtual Reality film industry. This is a potential game changer that can reinvent entertainment, along with a lot of other things in our life, and here’s why.
A Suspension of Reality
When we watch movies or read a good book, we’re often trying to forget about the stresses of our everyday lives for a while. We want to suspend reality and place ourselves in another world. That’s exactly what VR does. It can allow us to emerge ourselves in another place and time like no other technology has ever been able to do in the past. At the moment it’s more of a visual experience, but as technology improves, movie makers are looking at the potential of adding touch and taste to the virtual experience. Just imagine watching a movie set on a beautiful beach and being able to feel the wind in your hair and smell the ocean breeze – that’s what’s coming in the near future.
Better than Existing Technologies
For a time, 3D movies seemed to be taking the world by storm. It was pretty amazing to be able to sit in a movie theater, put on a cheap pair of glasses, and watch the screen come to life in front of you. At least, it was for a time. Unfortunately, 3D movies seem to have been more of a fad than anything else, and that seems to be largely because it tended to make viewers feel a little bit off and uncomfortable. You can still go to the movies and watch a 3D movie, but they’re nowhere near as popular as it was expected they would be. Virtual Reality has the potential to succeed where 3D failed. No matter how real 3D seemed, you always had a sense that you were watching a fantasy. VR has the potential to actually make you believe that what you’re experiencing is real; that’s a potential game changer.
They’ve Removed the Kinks
When we first got a taste of VR technology in the 80s, the engineering simply wasn’t ready for prime time. But after taking a bit of a hiatus, it’s back with a vengeance, and it seems like the innovative companies driving this technology have got things right this time. One of the main reasons VR failed the first time around was because it tended to make the user feel disoriented. They’ve solved this by using techniques such as allowing you to see your own virtual feet beneath you. They might not have all the kinks out yet, but they’re making real progress and it looks like VR in the film industry is here to stay.