Sundance Institute and Jaunt Studios announced their collaboration to launch a groundbreaking cinematic virtual reality residency program designed to empower artists on the cutting edge of storytelling. The first artist selected to participate in the six-month Sundance Institute New Frontier | Jaunt VR Residency Program is Lynette Wallworth, and three additional artists will be selected to participate in the coming months. Through this collaboration, Sundance Institute’s New Frontier program will continue a long tradition of cultivating new voices and innovative stories from the independent storytelling community, with Jaunt providing resident artists with the most advanced resources in cinematic virtual reality production.
Jaunt Studios is a creative studio pioneering the future of storytelling through cinematic virtual reality. The Sundance Institute New Frontier program supports and fosters independent artists working at the convergence of film, art, media, live performance, music and technology. The VR headset first showcased in New Frontier at the 2012 Sundance Film Festival with Nonny de la Peña’s Hunger in Los Angeles morphed months later into the Oculus Rift prototype. The enhanced DK2 version has been used by artists including Chris Milk, Danfung Dennis and Max Rheiner. Through its collaboration with Jaunt, the Institute seeks to build a community of collaborators across diverse disciplines to push the boundaries of story.
Keri Putnam, Executive Director of Sundance Institute said, “Virtual reality and other multimedia forms are accelerating the evolution of storytelling, and we are excited to collaborate with Jaunt Studios to provide independent artists the space and resources to experiment with these technologies. We hope their unique voices, diverse perspectives and creativity will help define the potential of this new medium.”
“Virtual reality represents an entirely new medium for entertainment and media, one where creativity is the new currency, artistic vision trumps tradition and immersion intensifies viewer emotions,” said Cliff Plumer, President of Jaunt Studios. “As we drive forward our mission is to empower the next generation of artists and filmmakers. The launch of the Sundance Institute New Frontier | Jaunt VR Residency is further proof that cinematic virtual reality is a major force in the evolution of storytelling, and of our commitment to get this technology into the hands of cutting edge filmmakers and storytellers.”
During their immersive residency, artists will pioneer new ways of delivering narrative through cinematic virtual reality, sharing experiences amongst themselves while learning from leading experts in the field. They will also receive a grant to make their virtual reality short films as well as post-production support and access to the industry’s most advanced tools, including Jaunt’s award winning professional-grade cinematic VR camera, Jaunt ONE, as well as its suite of production pipeline tools.
The first artist selected for the Sundance Institute New Frontier | Jaunt VR Residency Program is Sundance Institute New Frontier alumnus Lynette Wallworth, who will participate with her groundbreaking project Collisions. A work of stunning visuals and powerful narrative, Collisions tells the story of Aboriginal elder Nyarri Nyarri Morgan who lived as 1000 generations before him in the remote Pilbara desert of Western Australia– until his life was dramatically impacted by a collision with the extreme edge of Western science and technology. Wallworth is an acclaimed Australian artist and documentary filmmaker known for producing immersive artworks that provoke a profound emotional response. She is ideally positioned to explore the storytelling potential of VR, and sees the new form as the perfect vehicle for Nyarri to communicate his story. Wallworth’s immersive installations and films have been shown at the World Economic Forum (Davos), Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts, the Smithsonian, Adelaide Biennial, Brighton Festival, Vienna Festival, London Film Festival, Sydney Film Festival, Adelaide Film Festival and Margaret Mead Film Festival, among others. Collisions is produced by Sundance Film Festival alumnus Nicole Newnham and Academy Award-nominated film producer Cori Shepherd Stern.
As Jaunt continues to ramp up its newly launched creative studios arm, Jaunt Studios, this program is yet another example of the company’s continued work enabling the luminaries at the forefront of innovation in media and entertainment. Jaunt is empowering artists with the technology that eliminates the technical hurdles of creating cinematic VR, as well as the expertise to help them unlock the full potential of their creative vision and drive forward innovation in storytelling.
To experience all Jaunt content released to date, visit jauntvr.com/content.
Jaunt is pioneering the future of creative storytelling through cinematic virtual reality. Founded in 2013, Jaunt is the leading developer of the hardware, software, tools, and applications to enable cinematic VR and put the power of virtual reality in the hands of today’s best content creators. In addition, Jaunt works with leading creatives – from brands to artists to filmmakers – to create cutting-edge content through its studio arm, Jaunt Studios. Headquartered in Palo Alto, California, the company also maintains a presence in Los Angeles and produces branded and original VR content for audiences worldwide. Jaunt’s investors include The Walt Disney Company, Evolution Media Partners, China Media Capital, Highland Capital Partners, Google Ventures, Redpoint Ventures, Axel Springer, ProSiebenSat.1 SE, The Madison Square Garden Company, Peter Gotcher, Blake Krikorian, and Sky (corporate.sky.com). Experience more at www.jauntvr.com.
Founded in 1981 by Robert Redford, Sundance Institute is a nonprofit organization that provides and preserves the space for artists in film, theatre, and new media to create and thrive. The Institute’s signature Labs, granting, and mentorship programs, dedicated to developing new work, take place throughout the year in the U.S. and internationally. The Sundance Film Festival and other public programs connect audiences to artists in igniting new ideas, discovering original voices, and building a community dedicated to independent storytelling. Sundance Institute has supported such projects as Beasts of the Southern Wild, Fruitvale Station, Sin Nombre, The Invisible War, The Square, Dirty Wars, Spring Awakening, A Gentleman’s Guide to Love and Murder and Fun Home. Join Sundance Institute on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and YouTube.