With any luck, VR filmmaking is going to bring about a new generation of talent. A fresh wave creativity and energy is exactly what the medium will need to stand out from traditional films. With that said, that are some directors that have made such a mark on the industry in recent years that we can’t help but wonder what their VR movies could look like.
This isn’t a list of the biggest names in Hollywood (for the most part). This is a list of directors that shine in entirely different ways, and we feel that their unique merits could really benefit the medium.
Best Films: The Dark Knight, Inception, Memento
Let’s start off with an obvious one. Over the past decade Christopher Nolan has become a household name in modern movie making, already earning his place among the true greats of the medium. He makes stylish blockbusters that dive deep into theories both real and fantastical, though never fails to find the human heart at the centre of any subject. Here’s a director that could bring mind-bending visuals (Inception) and pulse-pounding plot twists (The Dark Knight) to VR.
Best Films: The Royal Tenenbaums, Moonrise Kingdom, The Grand Budapest Hotel
Anderson has a special place in the heart of many film buffs. He has a brilliant knack for dressing up human issues in bizarre stories, sets and characters. Bringing those elements to VR would no doubt be a challenge for a director that frames his shots to a tee, but if he could translate his brilliant penchant for surreal humour to the platform it would be well worth watching. We’d book a return trip to The Grand Budapest Hotel in VR in an instant.
Guillermo Del Toro
Best Films: Blade II, Pan’s Labyrinth, Hellboy II: The Golden Army
When it comes to visionary directors, you don’t get much bigger than the brilliant Guillermo Del Toro. Pan’s Labyrinth, Hellboy, and Pacific Rim are just a few examples of the incredible sights this man is capable of creating for his audiences, and VR could be his next step in bringing it all to life. In fact Del Toro has already expressed interest in VR technology and a Pacific Rim VR experience made the rounds a few years ago.
Best Films: The Hurt Locker, Zero Dark Thirty
Known for her authentic, intense and utterly engrossing depictions of modern conflicts, Bigelow could bring a sense of urgency to VR that we haven’t yet seen. The Hurt Locker gave us a deep exploration of the lives of those that serve our countries while the stunning Zero Dark Thirty slowly boiled to its thought-provoking retelling of the assassination of Osama Bin Laden. With VR, she could actually bringing audiences to the war zones we’re used to seeing through news broadcasts.
Paul Thomas Anderson
Best Films: Boogie Nights, There Will Be Blood, The Master
There are few directors as divisive as Anderson. He makes slow-paced films that might seem uneventful to the untrained eye, but build up remarkably layered characters that are fascinating to watch sometimes even in the most mundane of situations. VR would help us grow a deeper connection to those characters, and give us a chance to get to know them much better than we ever have before. We’d love to see how he crafts some of his longer, more drawn out scenes in VR.
Best Films: Shame, 12 Years A Slave
McQueen only has three directing credits to his name, but each is a great example of the unique ability he has to dig his nails into human hurt, tragedy and injustice. He’s best known for the shocking 12 Years A Slave, but his work with Shame is the real kind of intimate, uncompromising character study that we’d love to see in VR. His long shots, in which the audience are given whole minutes to stare at a particular scene or action, seem ripe for evolution in 360 degrees.
Best Films: A Room for Romeo Brass, Dead Man’s Shoes, This is England
As one of the most influential names in modern British social commentary filmmaking, Meadows probably has no interest in working with a flashy new technology like VR. But maybe that’s why getting him to shoot a VR movie could be so interesting; he’d approach it unlike anyone else. What does it mean when you can revisit vital and controversial moments in a nation’s history and get a granular case study on the everyday people affected by them? That’s a question we want Meadows to answer.