New technologies for television drama series: MISSING VR
Vostok VR was approached by the Channel 5 content team in August 2017 to create companion content for the television drama Missing. The show features top SG stars Rebecca Lim and Pierre Png as they solve crimes and missing person cases across Thailand and Singapore.
The project was inspired by the success of another cinematic 360-degree video filmed by Vostok VR. The film, Abandon, set in an unoccupied building in Bangkok, won two awards at GCCVR festival in China. This was the first time the Mediacorp executive team saw the cinematic potential of 360 video.
Vostok VR expanded the 15-episode television drama series to include eight hand-picked VR scenes that amplify the storytelling.
Missing was the first large scale VR drama in Asia and a first for Channel 5 as they created a cross border Singapore-Thailand crime production. This meant that most of the scenes and filming techniques were created from scratch. The project employed 360 animations in combination with static and moving camera shots. The award-winning crew simultaneously used up to six different devices. For example, the combination of a rover, a wirecam and a dolly simulated an enhanced production value camera fly-through effect. Binaural recording with special microphones created a natural feel and ambient environment.
Some of the storyline was set over 20 years ago. This added extra complications as shooting locations needed to reflect cityscapes, technology and pop culture from another era.
The 360 degree film production was completed in just 4 days and involved more than 20 talents. The Vostok VR team worked closely with Wawa Pictures pre-production team in order to retain the cinematic mood and environments of the original TV drama.
Missing VR is the first official 360 drama in Singapore and ASEAN. It was launched at Golden Village in Singapore in Feb 2018. It also marked the first time Toggle published a virtual reality movie project on its new 360 service.
Missing VR serves as a stepping stone for Mediacorp and other agencies to try new formats and build proof-of-concepts that can be shared with other venues.