Must See VR Films and Experiences Coming to Tribeca Film Festival

Tribeca Film Festival 2017 VR Films and Experiences

Tribeca Film Festival announced their lineup and we’re looking forward to the 29 VR films and experiences. Last year’s festival saw the debut of a number of immersive experiences, including Penrose Studio’s Allumette, one of our favorites.

To show how far virtual reality has come: a year ago at this time people were wondering with Allumette if there was audience for a VR experience that lasted more than 20 minutes. By the end of the Festival, no one was complaining about its length.

Variety summarizes what we can expect this year’s Festival,

The newly announced additions to the festival’s overall slate encompass the six entries in Storyscapes, the competitive section of programming dedicated to the intersection of film, tech and storytelling, along with the 23 titles lined up for the festival’s Virtual Arcade. Storyscapes titles range from personal projects such as “Draw Me Close,” Jordan Tannahill’s memoir about his relationship with his mother; to Hyphen-Labs’ scifi-themed entry “NeuroSpeculative AfroFeminism”; to an immersive recording of a Holocaust survivor’s testimony in Gabo Arora and Ari Palitz’s “The Last Goodbye.”

Hollywood Reporter has the full line up for the Tribeca Film Festival, both VR and traditional format. Speaking of the entire program, Cara Cusumano, Tribeca’s new director of programming, said

Each in their own way, these 98 films fill me with optimism and inspiration at the unique power of our medium, and the eyes of a talented filmmaker to inspire, challenge, and maybe even change the world.

Must See VR at Tribeca Film Festival

There are many groundbreaking projects here, and here are four that we are eagerly awaiting. This is just an initial list and we will have reviews of many of the VR films and experiences once we get access (descriptions here are from the Tribeca Film Festival site):

Arden’s Wake

Ardens Wake - VR Film at Tribeca Film Festival

Arden’s Wake (World Premiere) – USA
Project Creator: Eugene Chung
Key Collaborators: Jimmy Maidens

The sea levels have risen, and a young woman and her father live in a lighthouse perched atop the ocean’s surface. When he goes missing, she descends deep into the post-apocalyptic waters previously forbidden to her, embarking on a thrilling journey of family history and self-discovery. From the creators of the magnificent Allumette (Tribeca 2016), Arden’s Wake continues the elegant evolution of storytelling from Penrose Studios.



Hallelujah VR Experience at Tribeca Film Festival


Hallelujah (World Premiere) – USA
Project Creator: Zach Richter, Bobby Halvorson, Eames Kolar
Key Collaborators: Chrissy Szczupak, Orin Green, Jess Engel, ECCO VR, International Orange Chorale of SF, Chris Milk, Aaron Koblin

Hallelujah is a revolutionary virtual reality music performance that reimagines Leonard Cohen’s most well-known song. It is the world’s first VR music experience to provide an uncompromised sense of presence with six degrees of freedom using Lytro Immerge technology. A Within Original.



Blackout Scatter at Tribeca

Blackout (World Premiere)
Project Creators: Scatter: Alexander Porter, Yasmin Elayat, James George, Mei-Ling Wong
Key Collaborators: Hannah Jayanti, Antfood

Blackout is an ongoing participatory, volumetric VR project gathering the reflections of real people living in today’s tense political climate through the lens of the New York subway. By creating a rotating, ‘crowd-sourced’ cast, Blackout addresses the impossible task of representing the extraordinary breadth of human experience in New York City. Each viewing of Blackout is different, surrounding you with a unique group of straphangers taking you to the places their minds go between destinations.

The Island of the Colorblind

The Island of the Colorblind at Tribeca 2017

The Island of the Colorblind (International Premiere)
Project Creator: Sanne de Wilde
Key Collaborators: IDFA DocLab, de Brakke Grond

What does color mean to those who can’t see it? In the late eighteenth century a catastrophic typhoon swept over Pingelap, a tiny atoll in the Pacific Ocean. One of the few survivors carried a rare gene that causes achromatopsia, a condition that includes the inability to distinguish colors. Over generations, the islanders ended up perceiving their world in black and white. The Island of the Colorblind invites the audience to explore this shift in perception through de Wilde’s photography and an interactive installation.