The New York Times Releases Immersive Documentary in Aftermath of Paris Attacks

by Ian Hamilton • November 20th, 2015

In the aftermath of the horrific terror attacks in Paris, The New York Times is using Google Cardboard to bring viewers face to face with Parisians in mourning.

The new 5-minute video is available on the iPhone and Android NYT VR apps and is viewable with or without a Cardboard. The segments were captured at several locations in Paris earlier this week showing candlelight vigils with audio interviews overlaid, as well as scenes of singing and chanting.

vigilparisapp

The project’s quick turn-around is notable given the still relatively difficult process of capturing, editing and publishing 360-degree content. An overlay near the end of the video says the scenes were captured at five different locations between Nov. 15 and Nov. 18. The project likely represents an attempt to see how rapidly important global news can be delivered in 360-degrees, and whether it can add a deeper understanding of events. I’ve never been to Europe, so when I looked around at all the faces gathered in Paris trying to come to grips with what happened, I felt like my perceptions of the city ingrained by countless movies had been replaced with a bit of reality in a way other news coverage hasn’t matched.

The New York Times debuted its Cardboard project earlier this month with The Displaced, a documentary looking at three children driven from their homes in war-torn regions that accompanied the release of more than a million Google Cardboards to subscribers.

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