The BBC is serious when it comes to VR content production. Today, BBC has issued a spacewalk experience and formally revealed a VR team that will work with showrunners, “digital experts,” and filmers on fresh pieces. Home, a VR Spacewalk was developed by the BBC and Rewind, a digital production studio, for the Oculus Rift and HTC Vive in 2016. It is based on training programs of the European Space Agency (ESA) and NASA. And yes, they are the same ones that were used by astronaut Tim Peake, and it takes you through a repair on the outside part of the ISS. It has been featured at numerous film festivals. However, it has not been available to the public prior to today.
The BBC has already experimented with VR before. Early projects included a story that took viewers to the heart of a refugee crisis called “We Wait,” a VR fairy tale for Samsung Gear VR and Google Daydream called “The Turning Forest,” and a 360-degree animated film about human trafficking called “Trafficked.” While this is impressive, the efforts of BBC have usually felt a little scattershot and disjointed. The new team of the broadcaster called the “VR Hub” will try to organise this work and develop new experiences with extensive, mainstream appeal. However, they will be infrequent. The BBC says that it wants “a small number of high impact pieces” while the VR install base continues to be developed.