Los Angeles-based virtual reality startup AmazeVR has struck a deal with Atlas V and Felix & Paul Studios to distribute the studios’ immersive content on its platform. As part of its partnership with Atlas V, AmazeVR will be the first VR video platform to carry “Gloomy Eyes,” the animated zombie tale narrated by Collin Farrell that premiered at Sundance Film Festival earlier this year.
Through its distribution agreement with Atlas V, AmazeVR will also get access to “Ayahuasca,” which debuted at Tribeca this year, “Battlescar,” which is being narrated by Rosario Dawson, and “Vestige,” a room-scale VR experience that premiered at Tribeca in 2018. “Ayahuasca” will be available on AmazeVR in December, with the other Atlas V titles coming to the platform next year.
“AmazeVR has shown a deep commitment to the very best VR content, and by doing so, it raises the standard for what VR can be,” said Atlas V founder Antoine Cayrol. “At the same time, the AmazeVR platform offers the opportunity to expose new audiences to this stellar content.”
Felix & Paul Studios will be bringing some of their existing work to AmazeVR, including titles like “Space Explorers,” “The People’s House,” “Through the Ages” and “Strangers.”
“There is an appetite for high-quality premium content in VR,” said AmazeVR chief content officer Ernest Lee in an interview with Variety. Lee said that the company had initially been monetizing VR via transactional VOD, but that it started to experiment with a subscription tier late last year.
That experiment went so well that Amaze introduced a premium pass for a monthly fee of $6.99 (with cheaper options for users who pre-pay for multiple months) earlier this year. Lee said that Amaze would be selling Atlas V’s movies as part of its premium tier; titles that were available for free elsewhere would not require a subscription on AmazeVR either.
AmazeVR’s app is available for all major headsets, and have been downloaded a million times thus far. And while the company was until now primarily focused on 360-degree content, Amaze also started to produce interactive branched narratives last year. The next step for the company was to add high-end immersive VR experiences that viewers can lean into to its app, explained Lee.
Using the industry shorthand for 360-degree videos that only offer 3 degrees of freedom, he argued: “Storytelling can’t be limited to the 3DOF space.”