Watch: Boldly into virtual reality – The Molecule’s rise with VR

Last modification: 5 Oct, 2017
7 mins

"Traditional VFX and CG artists have a huge advantage if they want to get into VR. If you know Maya, I can show you how to do VR is Maya."

                        – Chris Healer, CEO/CTO/Founder, The Molecule

Video Transcript

CHRIS HEALER: VR has impacted us a lot. It's opened up new doorways to creativity, but it's also allowed us to walk into places, meet new people that we wouldn't have normally met and basically say, “No. We don't know how to do it, but we do know how to figure it out.” At this point, we've done about 20-25 VR projects. We've got some really cool things coming, which I can't talk about. But, this next year, I would guess we're probably going to do double or triple that.

LAUREN ELLIS: There are new challenges. There's new ways to figure out how do we organize this, how do we split this up, what is the shot, questions that we've answered forever now. What is the shot becomes a little different in VR.

CONAN O’BRIEN: Welcome to your exclusive peak at my Burbank studio.

MANUEL RIEDL: One of our projects earlier this year was 360 VR project for the Conan O'Brien booth at the San Diego Comic-Con.

CHRIS HEALER: The idea presented to us was we want a fabricated Conan O'Brien head. We mounted a VR headset inside of it. People would walk up, put this head on, which looks absolutely ridiculous.

MANUEL RIEDL: Once you'd put it on, you would be virtually in Conan's office or his studio. As you look around, you see little figurines.

CONAN O’BRIEN: Well, I think we know why the Empire lost.

CHRIS HEALER: Just one of these unique projects where like seven or eight departments were all happening in parallel, and we managed to get this one done in I think five weeks total. Which is crazy.

CONAN O’BRIEN: He's never caught a ghost. He did lock me in a closet once.

NEWS ANCHOR: Today's top story, Dr. Richard Ashland, CEO of Ashland Agriculture, died in his home in Greenwich, Connecticut.

CHRIS HEALER: We spent about the last year on a project called Invisible. It's an episodic VR scripted series, one of the first. It was big. It's ambitious. There's hundreds of shots between all five episodes. We learned so much about VR on Invisible. It's incredible.

INVISIBLE CHARACTER: I've got hurt. Get in there and help the others.

CHRIS HEALER: Traditional VFX and CG artists have a huge advantage if they want to get into VR. If you know Maya, I can show you how to do VR inside of Maya.

MANUEL RIEDL: Our pipeline is heavily based around Maya, meaning that if we do scene layouts in Nuke, if we lay out in SynthEyes or any other application, we always bring that into Maya.

CHRIS HEALER: The tool sets provided by Maya and by Autodesk are enabling people to just iterate quickly and explore new results without just having to be limited by the software.

LAUREN ELLIS: We're all learning, but you have to have visual effects as your partner in the VR content creation. You just do.

CHRIS HEALER: There are so many techniques for creating content in VR that just haven't been invented yet. It's the Wild West out there, and we're doing our part to bring things into reality.
  • Maya
  • Shotgun
  • VR
  • Film & VFX
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