Felix & Paul Studios, the EMMY-award winning creator of immersive entertainment experiences and the leading Space Media company, in partnership with NASA and TIME Studios, the EMMY-award winning television, film and immersive division of TIME, today announced the filming of the first-ever scenes in outer space captured in immersive 3D, 360° virtual reality format. Audiences will soon be able to experience what it is truly like to float in outer space by seeing everything completely around them, as if they were there in real life. The captured scenes have been made possible by Felix & Paul Studios’ customized virtual reality “Outer Space Camera”, attached to the Canadarm2 robotic arm which functioned as a “Space Crane” on the world’s first zero-gravity movie set.
These incredible, highly-immersive scenes will be included in episodes three and four of Space Explorers: The ISS Experience, an immersive series being produced by Felix & Paul Studios in association with TIME Studios. These forthcoming episodes will be available in 360° mobile format on 5G-enabled tablets and smartphones through leading telcos – including LGU+ (South Korea), KDDI (Japan), AIS (Taiwan), Orange (France) and Deutsche Telekom (Germany); at leading Big Screen venues, domes, planetariums, space visitor centers and science centers; in fully-immersive virtual reality on the Oculus Store for RIFT, Quest and Quest 2 devices; and as a main feature of the major, touring lifescale interactive exhibit, THE INFINITE, produced in partnership with PHI Studio.
“Today’s immersive cinematic capture of scenes in outer space is the culmination of close to three years of preparation. We are excited, honoured and truly humbled to have the opportunity to film in the most challenging environment known to humankind,” said Félix Lajeunesse, co-founder of Felix & Paul Studios and Director of Space Explorers: The ISS Experience. “Our mission since day one was to enable billions of people to experience what it is like to float in space and witness Planet Earth from above and we are pleased that this one-time dream will soon become reality in the final two episodes of our ISS Experience series.”
Less than 250 astronauts have ever conducted an extravehicular activity (EVA) – known as a “spacewalk” – and never before have audiences been able to experience what it is like to float in space as if they were astronauts themselves. The outer space scenes being captured in 3D will bring viewers “into the action” like never before and are being directed remotely by veteran directors Félix Lajeunesse and Paul Raphaël in both the Felix & Paul Studios facilities in Montreal and in the Canadian Space Agency facilities.
“Capturing the Earth in stereoscopic 3D, 360-degree format from space, outside the space station, has never been attempted until now,” said Jonathan Woods, Executive Producer of Space Explorers: The ISS Experience at TIME Studios and Emmy-winning producer of A Year in Space. “It’s beyond exciting and surreal to see this happening, knowing that the dream for this ambitious project started over five years ago in 2015.”
Felix & Paul Studios’ state-of-the-art Outer Space Camera is a customized Z-Cam V1 Pro camera consisting of nine 4K sensors allowing for a 3D, a 360-degree image at 8K resolution, and has been specially hardened by Nanoracks to withstand the harsh conditions of low atmosphere orbit, including vacuum, solar ultraviolet (UV) radiation, charged particle (ionizing) radiation, plasma, surface charging and arcing, temperature extremes, thermal cycling, and impacts from micrometeoroids and orbital debris (MMOD), and environment‐induced contamination from micrometeoroids and orbital debris (MMOD), and environment‐induced contamination. The Outer Space Camera can store approximately 15 hours of 3D, 360-degree footage with custom lenses made to withstand extreme light and heat to minimize flare when directly exposed to the Sun (external temperatures ranging from -250° F to +250° F).