Virtual reality needs content if it’s ever going to take off in a meaningful way. And while thus far that’s largely been focused on gaming, we’re finally starting to see studios make a major push into the space.
What shape that content will ultimately take is another question entirely. Certainly comedy and news aren’t the first two genres that immediately spring to mind when assessing the way the medium will impact future storytelling, but if you’re going to be stuck in a VR headset for an extended period, you might as well be watching something you’re into.
Back in March, Hulu made a major play in the space with a new app offering up its regular 2D content in a 3D setting, along with 25 pieces of VR-specific content. Now the company is making a platform specific push with the launch of two new shows produced by HuffPo’s RYOT Studios.
The service has ordered 10 episodes of The Big Picture: News in Virtual Reality, which, one suspects, is pretty much what it sounds like. The other, Virtually Mike and Nora (five episodes) features Nora Kirkpatrick, an actress probably best known for playing Dwight Schrute’s love interest on The Office.
Kirkpatrick described the show thusly to Variety, “I think we’ve come up with a way to break down the wall between performer and audience member, and explore comedy in 360 degrees.”
The shows are arriving on the platform this fall, accessible through the Samsung Gear VR and Oculus Rift. Hulu is opting not to offer them on its non-VR platform.
Update: Hulu asked us to clarify that while the programs are original, the were not produced by its Hulu Originals wing.