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Steven Spielberg joins film industry VR startup The Virtual Reality Company

Hollywood is paying very close attention to the progress and development of the virtual reality (VR) industry. While VR technology is far from mature, it presents compelling possibilities to the film and entertainment industry. After Facebook’s purchases of Oculus, Mark Zuckerberg hinted at a lot of the things that has the film industry salivating:

After games, we’re going to make Oculus a platform for many other experiences. Imagine enjoying a court side seat at a game, studying in a classroom of students and teachers all over the world or consulting with a doctor face-to-face — just by putting on goggles in your home.1

The fact that Facebook spent a whopping $2b on the acquisition of Oculus is a perfect display of the hope that is being placed on VR. Further,earlier this year, Oculus opened the Oculus Story Studio. The Oculus Story Studio is tasked with, “Discovering a new medium of story telling in Virtual Reality and sharing what we find.”2 It makes sense that the company itself would begin to explore the uses of VR in film and entertainment, but now several A-List Hollywood figures are jumping on the VR train.

vrc1 Steven Spielberg joins film industry VR startup The Virtual Reality Company

The Virtual Reality Company has assembled a versatile team with loads of Hollywood experience and accolades to bring VR to the forefront in film making. The Virtual Reality Company’s founding team includes:

  • Robert Stromberg – Chief Creative Officer – 2-Time Academy Award winner for the production design on Avatar and Alice in Wonderland, and the Director of Disney’s Maleficent.
  • Chris Edwards – CEO – Founder and CEO of The Third Floor, a previsualization studio whose recent credits include: Marvel franchises like Avengers and X-Men, the new Godzilla, and Gravity.
  • Joel Newton – President – A longtime producer who has built an Oscar-Nominated management/production company.
  • Guy Primus – COO – Co-founded and managed Tentpole Ventures, a seed-stage tech investment fund that focuses on consumer lifestyle companies and whose portfolio includes Pinterest, DogVacay, Fancy and Loom.

That’s not the end of the talented team either. It was just announced that none other than two-time Best Director Academy Award winner Steven Spielberg would be taking a seat on the Virtual Reality Company’s advisory board. With this powerhouse team assembled, The Virtual Reality Company has some major things in the pipeline, including content directed by both Spielberg and Ridley Scott. The company is currently raising a $23 million funding round.3

  1. Mark Zuckerberg, Facebook post announcing acquisition of Oculus  
  2. Facebook, “Oculus Story Studio”  
  3. Erich Schwartzel, The Wall Street Journal, “Virtual-Reality Projects Get Hollywood Treatment,” 15 April 2015 (Paywall)