In March, the construction of a lavish set for Rocket Gang — choreographer Bosco Martis's directorial debut — was halted due to the lockdown. Now, as filmmakers have to shoot in a controlled environment and with minimal crew, Martis has chanced upon a novel idea to take his project forward. In a first in Bollywood, the director will film portions of the movie using real-time virtual reality (VR). The advanced technique — recently employed in The Jungle Book, and the live-action remake of The Lion King — not only provides an interactive experience to the audience, but also enables a director to shoot a film without the responsibility of erecting an elaborate set.
"We need to start shooting soon because the film has kids as the principal cast] and if we wait too long, they won't look the part.
An international team specialising in visual effects gave us a presentation about virtual reality that Zee Studios [producer] and I were kicked about. The process will save us time. Earlier, the actors were to perform against a chroma set. But with the VR headset, I can visualise the scene beforehand. After the shot, the actors too can see how the sequence looks, which will help improve their performance," explains the director.
Martis says he will kick off the VR schedule in a few months, followed by an on-set stint of the dance horror comedy.
"Almost 40 per cent of the film will be shot in VR. The idea is to lend a fantastical feel to the story."