When Will Smith (no, not that one) announced he was leaving Tested to start his own virtual reality company last September, it came as a bit of a shock. But sometimes you see something so powerful that you can't do anything to stop yourself from pursuing it. Now Smith has revealed exactly what he's doing: A talk show filmed entirely in VR called The FOO Show. "My goal with The FOO Show is to showcase amazing creators and their works in ways that were never before possible, using virtual reality," he writes on Medium.
Smith says that the ultimate goal was to produce the same type of videos he was known for at Tested, but in a cutting edge, interactive setting. For example, the first episode (which he says is currently in early access on Oculus Home; SteamVR is coming soon) features the folks behind Firewatch, developer Campo Santo, and him exploring a location from the game. There have been a few attempts at talk shows in VR before, but nothing quite with these types of production values.
The focus is on using off-the-shelf hardware like the HTC Vive to capture performances, and after all the initial work like building a set and writing a script is done, an episode only takes a few hours to render. Regular production starts this summer and Smith promises "lots" more by year's end. Considering his output on Tested, that's probably a bit of an understatement.
Here's what I've been working on, introducing FOO VR: https://t.co/GFpO6a6K2z— Will Smith (@willsmith) April 2, 2016
PS If you have a Rift, check us out in the Oculus Store