Virtual reality audiences are building, as cutting-edge technology improves the experience

Secret Location’s president explains how virtual reality distribution platforms are key

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Day: May 10
Time: 2:25PM - 3:25PM

In this keynote, James Milward, winner of the first Prime Time Emmy® awarded to a VR project, describes the current state of Virtual and Mixed Reality, how it’s currently being used in entertainment and the potential of the platform in the near future. Will Virtual and Augmented Reality become a compelling and dominant platform or burst and fade away? What are the revenue streams and viability? What makes VR and AR production possible? What will it take for these platforms and content formats to be accessible and engaged in by audiences? Who will the key players be in both content and platform moving forward?

Video summary

VR audiences on virtual reality distribution platforms like YouTube 360 and Facebook 360 are transported, unconstrained by the physicality of the real world. New, cutting-edge technology in cameras and VR content dissemination are allowing a powerful method of story-telling to reach more fans. In this video, the president of Secret Location, James Miller, explains how his content studio for emerging platforms won the first ever prime-time Emmy in virtual reality. By combining their own 360-degree camera with innovative and creative story-telling and new VR distribution platforms, Secret Location is extending and transcending reality. In VR experiences like Sleepy Hollow, they merge top-quality CGI graphics, 360-degre sound, and live action video to create the magic of virtual reality for a totally unique fan experience.

Experts in this video

Ministre Joly

Minister of Canadian Heritage

President/Executive Producer, Secret Location

Video transcript excerpts

“The race to capture reality is on.”

“Why is [virtual reality] powerful? What does it do? It creates, at its best, a sense of presence. The idea that it takes away the distractions of the world, it transports you somewhere else, and you are present in that environment. You’re no longer constrained by the physicality of the real world. You’re now in a virtual environment that’s got you fully immersed and present.”

“The way we do it is despite the technology, despite the platform, despite many of the shiny corners that we can get hooked on, we just start with story. That’s ultimately what connects people together. That’s what people care about despite the platform.”

“Deep into the world of Sleepy Hollow, [Ichabod Crane says,] ‘Stay where you are. In the dark, in the fog, he might be able to detect you.’ Through the magic of virtual reality, visitors found themselves in the show’s spooky graveyard setting, seeing the dire warning from the main character, Ichabod Crane, moments before a hair-raising encounter with the headless horseman.”

“I’m too Canadian to have an ego about this stuff, but it’s the first time I’ve ever seen someone…finish watching our work with tears in their eyes. I’ve never been able to experience that. We were able to showcase it both in live events, and to get that understanding of how visceral it was for people to be transported to an Ebola treatment hospital or in front of the person that lost their entire family.”

“For me, and where I’m really excited…is in how we extend and transcend reality…If I can go somewhere where I would never be able to go, where my imagination literally couldn’t take me, where we can facilitate experiences that don’t exist in the real world. To me, that’s where we see the huge value.”

“I think the most important thing to leave this room is that we’re all doing something we don’t know how to do, in order to learn how to do it. That’s particularly important today, because by the time this does have the ability to transcend and there’s a VR headset in every house, there won’t be time to figure out how not to screw it up. We’re doing that now, so when we’re there, we’re going to win.”

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