Around 80 virtual and augmented reality experts are congregating in Los Angeles Tuesday and Wednesday this week as part of an invite-only summit held by the Fox Innovation Lab. The event, dubbed “All Realities: Augmented, Virtual and Mixed”, will have panels exploring explore the possibilities of mixed reality, virtual reality (VR) production, immersive audio, VR hardware and more.
20th Century Fox Home Entertainment launched the Fox Innovation Lab in 2014 as a kind of R&D unit to explore virtual reality and similar next-generation technologies. The Lab has since produced a VR experience for “Wild”, as well as more recently the “Martian VR Experience.”
The latter is also getting its own panel at the summit, with panelists including the experience’s director and Virtual Reality Company co-founder Robert Stromberg talking with Fox Home Entertainment president Mike Dunn and 20th Century Fox post production president Ted Gagliano as well as Fox Searchlight EVP David Greenbaum and Fox futurist Ted Schilowitz. Some of the other invited participants include VRSE founder Chris Milk, Jaunt CTO Arthur van Hoff as well as some folks from Microsoft’s Hololens team.
The upside for throwing this event seems obvious for Fox: A studio that is looking to capitalize on VR can only benefit from getting some of the smartest people in the industry in the same room. But Fox Innovation Lab director and 20th Century Fox advanced technologies SVP Ian Harvey told Variety that the studio also wants to play a bit of a matchmaker, and bring together representatives from a industries that don’t normally meet, including technology, Hollywood and even the medical community.
One example: Dr. Neil Martin, Chairman of the UCLA Department of Neurosurgery, will share insights into cutting edge brain surgery that uses virtual reality-like approaches to give doctors the ability to navigate through a 3D model of a patient’s brain.
“It is exciting to host this unique event and open the Fox Innovation Lab to unite industries in a shared vision to push the boundaries of what’s possible in augmented, virtual and mixed realities,” Harvey said, adding: “We are at the cusp of an entirely new way to immerse audiences through the power of storytelling in VR, and the possibilities are endless across many other industries including healthcare, education, tourism, and many more.”