Australian VR Talent Shines at the 2017 Cannes Film Festival


Six Australian 360 Virtual Reality experiences will be showcased at the upcoming Cannes Film Festival on May 20th at a special session presented by the Byron Bay Film Festival (BBFF’s) & and BBFF Festival Director J’aimee Skippon-Volke’s new VR Production company Collective Reality.

Next is the innovation hub of the Cannes Film Festival’s Marché du Film, one of the largest film markets in the world. Entitled Australian Immersion the session reveals the scope of 360 work being produced by Australians – from documentary pieces exploring societal, ancient & emotional connections to darker genres.

In recent years the Byron Bay Film Festival (BBFF) has been encouraging audiences & filmmakers to explore the storytelling & creative opportunities generated by Virtual, Augmented & Mixed Reality through workshops and screenings. This session reveals the scope of 360 work being produced by Australians – from societal, ancient & emotional connections to the dissection of darker genres…

Sydney’s The Pulse have two projects in the line-up Songlines directed by Michael Gray/Emmanuel Grisa and produced by Kate Ayrton features the work of 6 aboriginal artists celebrates First Nations’ spirituality and culture through the songlines of Australia’s land and sky. Remember directed George Kacevski and produced by George Kacevski, Brett Heil & Tracey Taylor is a sci-fi piece exploring our relationship with technology and its influence on our reality.

Michael Beets’ Jafri, produced by Melissa Benavides and Sophie Woods shares the daily life and thoughts of a silent activist for racial equality who every Friday stands silently in the middle of Melbourne’s busiest intersection.

Two Queensland Directors both in their early 20’s have their dramatically different work included. Amor de Abuela (A Grandmother’s Love) debuted at Sundance and recently featured at SXSW. Created by Jessie Hughes as part of the Oculus for Good project in conjunction with Global Brightlight Foundation the piece highlights the impact solar energy can have on impoverished communities. The Peeler was directed by ProxiVR’s Harrison Norris and produced by Harrison and Guy Norris (co-directors of the Suicide Squad VR experience) along with Emily Tate. Full of blood and gore the piece is a dark journey into a psychopath’s warehouse.

A visually rich animated underwater piece Coral and I examines the impact that humans have on the environments around them and in turn evokes awareness of the impact nature has on us.

Designed, modelled and, at times, animated in VR by 2 of Australia’s most innovative VR Creators – Matthew Hermans (Electric Lens Co) & Luke Bubb (Moving Peaks) the piece was produced by Matthew Hermans and J’aimee Skippon-Volke.

J’aimee says “Sound design was provided by Kevin O’Neill in San Francisco, Luke was working out of Bangalow just outside of Byron Bay and Matt was in Sydney, together with the mechanisms of how the experience was created this piece reflects the potential that, as a new industry and creative tool, VR holds for collaborations between studios and creatives, no matter what the distance is between them”.

Matthew added “We’re starting a conversation about the human presence on Earth through using our unique physical workflow to create this visual experience. Our hope is to affect people by having them affect themselves which is very powerful and magic and hopefully leads to a new perspective on life. We’ve planned out two more pieces which will continue the conversation/story”.

The Byron Bay International Film Festival has partnered with Convergence 04 to present a large array of VR Content and short films at the Convergence Film Festival at Event Cinemas George St on May 3rd. A highlight of the festival is the opportunity to experience holographic Mixed Reality.

Visit for more information about the Convergence Film Festival.

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