Short film festival held in VR on Friday

Discover.film’s virtual cinema. (Image courtesy Discover.film.)

Discover.film will be holding its short film festival in virtual reality this Friday on the VRChat virtual reality meeting platform.

The event will start at 8 p.m. British time — or noon Pacific, following by a second screening at 1 a.m. British time, or 5 p.m. Pacific.

The screenings will take place in a custom-built, discover.film virtual cinema and will showcase the best of the shortlisted films in the running for this year’s discover.film Best Content Award. The two Craghoppers Student Prize winning films will also screen in the curated sessions, which includes: ground-breaking French animation, The Garden Party; hard-hitting American school-shooting drama, Dekalb Elementary; Mexican fantasy thriller, Ulysses; and British comedy drama, The Lost Scot. All films in the program are available on the global short form entertainment platform, discover.film.

“I’ve always believed VR offers limitless opportunities for both sponsors and advertisers,” said Jaine Green, head of content for the organization. “Given VR and AR’s massive growth over recent years we started planning this event and creating the cinema well before lock-down, as an exciting addition to our existing short film festival, The discover.film Awards. Now, of course, we’re delighted to be in the position of having a wonderful and completely safe screening space to welcome a global audience to celebrate the hard work of talented filmmakers from around the world.”

Director Joe Hunting, one of the organizers of the unique festival, became involved after his virtual reality film, A Wider Screen, won Best Documentary at a previous discover.film Festival.

“I’m thrilled for the opportunity to introduce VR to a wider audience,” he said. “It’s great when various media can successfully merge, so I was delighted when discover.film approached me to be involved with the festival.”

The bespoke cinema designed especially for the festival has been created by, VRChat user Rey Skywalker and has everything you’d expect to find in a conventional cinema but with a few extras, such as a built-in voting system, which allows audiences to select their favorite films.

Visitors without headset can attend the festival online.