‘The Revenant’ director is making a VR short with Lucasfilm

Director Alejandro González Iñárritu will reunite with cinematographer Emmanuel Lubezki for the experimental movie.


While the jury is still out on whether virtual reality is the future of film, some of Hollywood’s biggest filmmakers are dedicating a lot of time to the medium. Deadline reports that two-time Oscar-winning director Alejandro González Iñárritu is teaming up with three-time Oscar winning cinematographer Emmanuel Lubezki to work on a new VR short.

It will focus on “the intense and excruciating experience of a group of immigrants and refugees crossing the border between Mexico and the United States” and sees Iñárritu and Lubezki reunite after have previously worked together on the critically-acclaimed The Revenant and Birdman.

The virtual reality piece has been four years in the making and will utilize the smarts of Lucasfilm’s ILMxLAB team, who will build the world and characters. ILMxLAB is the new immersive entertainment division inside Industrial Light & Magic that previously created the Star Wars: Trials on Tatooine VR experience for HTC Vive.

The new project is due to be released next spring, after the presidential elections. It’s not yet known how it will be viewed — whether it’ll get a theatrical release or shown at smaller VR-specific events — but having so many big names attached to the short can only build interest in the emergent virtual reality movie scene.