VR for Good: Creators Lab Returns for 2017
Oculus Blog
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Posted by Oculus VR
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May 8, 2017
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Application Deadline: May 18, 2017

Over the past year, our VR for Good initiative and its Creators Lab program have helped bring exciting new voices to the field of VR content creation. Just last month, Step to the Line premiered at Tribeca, while nine of the first films produced through the program were accepted into some of the world’s most recognizable film festivals in 2017. From in-depth press coverage to acclaim from Mark Zuckerberg and Sheryl Sandberg, these talented creators have demonstrated the impact of VR’s ability to tell powerful stories in a meaningful way.

We’re continually amazed and inspired by the myriad ways artists tap into the creative potential of this new visual storytelling medium. That’s why we recently announced that we're allocating $50M to fund the development of non-gaming, experiential VR content. Today, we take an important step forward with the launch of VR for Good’s 2017 Creators Lab program.

Now in its second year, Creators Lab pairs up-and-coming filmmakers with unique causes to create transformative VR experiences that showcase the need for social change in breakthrough ways.

Applications are open now through May 18, 2017. Filmmakers and nonprofits from around the world are encouraged to apply for this collaborative opportunity to make something magical. Click here for more information or to complete the brief application.

Creators Lab invites participants to join us in Los Angeles for a two-day summit featuring workshops, brainstorming, mentoring, and community building June 15 – 16.

Through Creators Lab, we work directly with people who champion various causes to illustrate how beautiful and moving VR experiences can change our perspectives and motivate action. We also challenge and support our creators to tell stories anyone can appreciate, regardless of their stance on a particular issue.

Virtual Reality, Real-World Impact
VR has the ability to foster empathy across diverse groups of people and transport us to almost any situation. One of the first and most successful projects to come out of the Creators Lab program, Step to the Line—available on Oculus Video for both Rift and Gear VR, plus as a Facebook 360 video—is a compelling example, letting you walk a proverbial mile in the shoes of an inmate.

From the claustrophobia of a confined cell to the experience of standing side-by-side with people you might never otherwise have met, it challenges our preconceived notions and highlights the systemic inequalities behind our criminal justice system. Rather than dictating its message, Step to the Line lets you feel what it’s like to have hope behind bars—and that subtlety is where the real magic lies.

We’re excited to provide even more organizations working to improve the world with a unique and compelling avenue to tell their stories while supporting the creation—and creators—of socially relevant VR experiences.

Creating and Sustaining a Movement
Creators Lab lets us spread awareness of meaningful causes in our communities and beyond while also highlighting the transformative potential of VR—and we’re just getting started.

Like all art, VR can change our lives for the better. We can’t wait to see more content that affects us emotionally and challenges us to rethink our assumptions.

If you’re a socially-conscious filmmaker who wants to help spread awareness of the need for social change or a nonprofit organization that wants to amplify your voice and share your story with the world, apply now.

— The Oculus Team