Nonny de la Peña, founder of Emblematic Group, a global pioneer in Virtual Reality (VR) in documentary films, talks to Diplomatic Council’s global media chair Dieter Brockmeyer about the impact of VR on our society.
Nonny founded the group three and a half years ago and since then has made herself a name as godmother of VR. Her company has been nominated Global Media Innovator 2017 by an international inde-pendent leadership board that the global think tank Diplomatic Council formed two years ago for the Innovators first round in 2016.
Nonny, the big question everybody is seeking the answer for right now is how VR will be changing the Entertainment, TV and the news business. What is your projection for may be the next 5 to 10 years?
Nonny de la Peña: “VR will be everywhere. It will become a core component of mainstream news and entertainment as well as in education, science and medicine.”
Some say you only use tools and experiences that are regular used by the games industry for some time yet. What is your approach on innovation and what are the challenges in documentary and news?
Nonny: “It’s all about finding the right story to tell and/or the right audio to build a story on. Emblematic tackles very difficult subject matters – from homelessness to women’s rights to police brutality, domestic violence and the civil war in Syria. We are focused on educating and connecting viewers to a particular situation and condition.”
VR will have an impact on storytelling for sure. It’s easy to imagine the audience being part of the warriors’ line the king sends into battle. And you part of the army galloping on horseback downhill towards a wall of spears pointing at you. However, there are other moments, like a love scene, when you don’t want your audience to wander around. In documentary and news there are similar situations. How can we cope with this different expectations and situations?
Nonny: “The impact that virtual, augmented and mixed reality has had on the way we see, hear and feel stories – both fiction and the news – is ground-breaking. Being in the moment transcends being an observer connecting you to the subject more than any other medium.”