How Brands Are Enhancing Fictional Narratives With Real-Life Immersion
From Star Wars to indie projects, entertainment companies are extending their reach by creating fully immersive experiences that let fans live out their favorite narratives
While in the past, media might have served as an accessory to real life, now the opposite is the trend. Increasingly, entertainment companies are complementing on-screen content with immersive experiences, giving people the opportunity to live out their favorite narratives. Here are four activations that bring stories off the page and screen, and allow fans to take part in the action:
When the Star Wars resorts open at Walt Disney World and Disneyland in 2019, the theme park will allow visitors to develop a reputation. If a visitor rides the attraction that pits the First Order vs. the Resistance, the side they pick will have ramifications throughout the park. You may be asked to do tasks for one side or the other in a bar and whether you choose to do it or not could affect your park experiences. The whole point is to immerse the viewer in Star Wars in a way they’ve never felt before.
Samurai Films x Haneda Airport
Samurai Films lets travelers at the Haneda Airport tape a scene as a samurai and have it edited into a professional-looking feature. Led by movie stuntman Kenji Sato, the project allows those who partake to dress the part and battle ninjas, all documented in a short movie showcasing their swordsmanship. The entire process, including costume change, rehearsal and filming, takes 2 and a half hours and is available at the airport only on certain occasions.
The Lust Experience is an immersive theater project in which 100 participants are involved in a months-long game of conspiracy and paranoia. Each person involved in the experience has to complete various tasks, including speaking with actors on the phone, taking part in one-on-one encounters, and tracking messages while grisly murders and corrupt deals take place.
Simu-Life is four-day fictional narrative experience that plays out in real-world locations, mixing the line between reality and fantasy by letting users interact with the story as part of their daily lives. The experience is centered around one or more participants, and is supported by a full cast and crew, as well as captured on hidden cameras.
Immersive experiences are on the rise in out-of-home entertainment. For more insights, download the PSFK research paper The Out-Of-Home Entertainment Experience.