River Snapshot: InnerspaceVR, shaping the future of interactive storytelling

by Will Mason • April 24th, 2015

As a part of our ongoing mission to showcase the virtual reality industry’s hottest startups we headed over to River, Rothenberg Ventures’ new accelerator program for VR, for an inside look at (a ‘VR Snapshot’ if you will) each of the 13 companies (selected from a group of 200) in the program, before their big demo day Monday.

InnerspaceVR is doing some pretty amazing things in the virtual reality space. Drawing upon a team with immense cinematic experience, InnerspaceVR is focused on telling some of the most thoughtful and engaging stories we have seen in VR. Utilizing mechanics that will allow for interactivity with the narrative, the team is actively looking to shape the way we tell narratives in this new medium. We sat down with Jason Ochoa, InnerspaceVR’s head of business development, to chat more about the work the team is doing.

Who is InnerspaceVR? 

We are a VR software studio shaping the future of interactive storytelling. 

What is your team’s background?

InnerspaceVR was founded by two movie makers. Balthazar Auxietre has already lead and directed 5 virtual reality projects and is a repeat lecturer for French universities in cinematic art and the new standards set by Virtual Reality. Hayoun kwon,  has a dozen awards and over a hundred nominations for her short movies, documentaries and political films.

There are seven members on the InnerspaceVR team, the two founders Balthazar and Hayoun, [Jason Ochoa] is BD and will run the US office, the core development team is composed of four experts in their field: Guillaume (lead 3D Artist and animator), Alexis (Game Designer), Fabrice (Level Designer and environmental artist), Garry (Programer).

Read More: Innerspace’s Branching Narratives are Just What VR Storytelling Needs

When did you start working together?

We started to experiment with VR devices in 2010, in a new media art program called “Le Fresnoy, studio national” in the north of France. 

Where are you guys at with your projects?

We are currently working on several titles which will be available on the different platforms: D.M.Z a documentary project on the militarized zone between South and North Korea, The FireBird a roomscale experience and The Fifth Sleep one of the the first ever interactive feature films for VR.

A few images from InnerspaceVR's "The Fifth Sleep"

A few images from InnerspaceVR’s “The Fifth Sleep”

Why is the work you are doing important?

VR Manufacturers are looking for high quality content to showcase their hardware. At the moment there are very few high quality content providers in the space and even fewer have the ability to tell compelling stories in VR. InnerspaceVR creates experiences from the ground up exclusively for VR, we are committed to narrative driven high quality artistic content and we have support from strategic partners like Samsung and Oculus. We’re here to lead the charge in a new frontier!

What kind of funding have you received, and from who?

We have 600k committed from private Korean investor, Rothenberg Ventures and F50

How can people experience what you are doing?

People can currently experience 3 of our titles in the Samsung GearVR – The Cave and The Fifth Sleep are inside Oculus 360 videos and Playhead is its own stand alone app. More soon…

We will continue to follow InnerspaceVR’s progress closely as they ramp up to release a lot of really cool content this year. Be sure to stay tuned for more as we continue to profile each of the startups in Rothenberg Ventures’ River program leading up to Founder’s Field Day.

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