CBS Interactive Unveils Original VR Comedy 'Our Reality is Virtual' at Cannes Lions
Saturday Night Live’s Kenan Thompson appears in multiple roles in the scripted short, using humour to showcase the fundamentals of virtual reality. Conceived in late April and shot in New York in May, it was produced by CBS Interactive's Studio 61 brand (led by CBSi Media Group's Christy Tanner) in partnership with The Uprising Creative and WEVR (led by Anthony Batt), with support from Kendall Ostrow from UTA.
"We wanted to showcase for our clients how we can use virtual reality to combine creativity and tech for fresh, compelling storytelling," explains Christy Tanner. "The results exceeded our expectations. We've seen people shocked, scared and excited wearing VR goggles, but we've never before seen them laugh like they did watching Kenan."
“We've been producing and directing a lot of different VR projects recently, and having a chance to attend Cannes with this group of partners and present original work really represents a dream-team in action," said Uprising's Jeff Nicholas, who directed “Our Reality is Virtual” along with Jonathan Craven. "Together with Kenan, everyone at WEVR, and everyone from Studio 61, we created something that's not only funny, but it’s also helping a lot of people better understand VR storytelling. We're demystifying it a little bit."
Uprising has more original VR content debuting this week. On Monday, Fort Minor's 360-degree VR "Welcome" music video debuted, and that also was directed by Nicholas. Both projects used similar production and post-production workflows, featuring a custom 4-camera GoPro rig for capturing in 360-degrees. For the shoot with Kenan in NYC, the directors also used a Sony A7S camera for principal photography, shooting in 180-degrees to capture two plates of talent and crew that were then stitched together for comic effect.