A new VR series from Unwritten Endings and VRTOV promises to dive into the deeper effects of war by retelling a true story.
Directed by Michael Beets, The Unknown Patient tells the story of an Australian man found in the streets of London wearing a soldier’s uniform during the first World War. Seemingly suffering from amnesia, he had no recollection of who he was and how he came to be in London and was thus deemed unfit for service before being shipped back to the Callan Mental Asylum in Sydney.
The VR experience joins this character in that asylum, where he spent a staggering 12 years not knowing who he really was. Over the course of several episodes, you’ll discover the journey he took to regain his past and also dive into some of the shocking memories he retains of his time in the war. The piece is produced by Katy Morrison, who also worked on VR projects like The Turning Forest and Easter Rising: Voice of a Rebel.
To create the piece, Beets filmed actors including Lily Sullivan (Picnic At Hanging Rock, Romper Stomper), Felicity Steel (Predestination, Offspring) and Michael Robinson in full mocap suits, with their performances being virtualized in real-time. It’s also an interactive piece, at times asking viewers to react to their environment. We’ll be really interested to see how it turns out.
The first episode of The Unknown Patient is set to debut at the Venice Film Festival at the end of the month along with a number of other VR projects.