IMAX Director Now Turns to Virtual Reality
DJ Roller has been all over the world, to seven continents to be exact. He’s been with James Cameron in deep waters and directed exciting movies in 3D and IMAX for several years now. However, Roller, the cinematographer whose won several awards, is also a technologist. He thinks that the future of content is through virtual reality.
He’s the co-founder of NextVR, a virtual reality company that’s releasing the first broadcast production truck that was developed solely for recorded and live virtual reality events.
Roller said, “You park it. Get power to it. And turn it on. It is designed completely differently because VR is a different medium.”
And headsets have taken many steps up since it’s not just the Google Cardboard anymore. Oculus Rift, Samsung Gear VR and the HTC Vive are all available to consumers. NextVR is growing as they’re producing 2 projects each week now, which is more than the previous 1 per week. They’re also speaking with all of the huge networks, brands and event producers. He said, ”We’re speaking with every tent poll brand on the planet, even brands that you wouldn’t associate with VR, because they’re savvy enough to realize how powerful the medium is.” NextVR currently has a five year deal with FoxSports and they have become partners with Toyota to produce virtual reality content for the Daytona 500 event. He said, “It woke up the entire auto industry and we had nonstop calls from other automakers.” Roller says that they will have several additional live virtual reality projects very soon. Michael Davies, the Senior Vice President Field and Technical Operations at Fox Sports, said, “Having a VR broadcast truck to cover major events is another example of how NextVR continues to lead the market in this emerging technology.”
The NextVR broadcast truck traveled on a cargo aircraft after being built by third party manufacturers. The truck is able to go anywhere, from California to Norway and beyond.
Roller said, “We have a mature VR technology, all built from the very beginning with production in mind. It’s the next progression to have a mobile unit.”