iFiction. Gert Keyaerts and Marc Van De Walle

iFiction, Immersive Fiction Film: Beyond the Gimmick

  • Research unit: LABOPro
  • Course: Film - Television - Video

In the slipstream of the popularization of virtual reality (VR) in recent years, a number of 360˚ short films have also been made. However, it turns out to be very difficult to tell a compelling story with this medium. The spherical image recording makes it practically impossible to use classic lighting and sound recording. The traditional film grammar techniques can also hardly be applied to this medium. This research aims to address the narrative disadvantages that are currently inherent in immersive fiction film. By experimenting at different levels, we try to develop innovative ways to enhance the experience of the story. Initially, the research focuses on the possibilities that a smaller angle of view than the usual 360˚ could offer. We use a design-based approach to investigate whether reducing the angle of view offers new possibilities to increase the storytelling power and technicity of the medium without losing too much on immersiveness. In a second component, experiments are done with the use of three-dimensional sound. We investigate to what extent sound control can be a determining factor in the understanding and experience of the immersive narrative. In a third part, the researchers try to demonstrate the influence of limitation of the freedom of movement by controlling the turning movement of the viewer. In addition to the scientific report, an artistic component is linked to the results of this research in the form of an immersive short film.

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