Virtual reality show brings Montrealers aboard the International Space Station
MONTREAL -- When billionaire Amazon founder Jeff Bezos took an all-civilian crew to space, it woke the inner astronaut in many dreamers.
Now, a Montreal team wants to make that dream a reality.
A virtual reality, that is.
“Our goal is to bring space to audiences,” said Felix Lajeunesse, creative director of Felix and Paul Studios, one of the teams behind THE INFINITE – a virtual reality experience that allows viewers to explore the International Space Station (ISS).
The studio worked with NASA to develop virtual reality cameras that could function in zero gravity.
In 2019, they sent the tech to the ISS, where Quebec-born astronaut David Saint-Jacques would operate, as well as other space workers.
“We would work in synergy with them from earth to space,” said Lajeunesse.
“Sometimes the astronauts would even take creative liberties,” he said, “such as filming shots of their own initiative.”
The result is a day in the life of an astronaut with all its pleasures and challenges.
While details of the production are under wraps, those who saw the show said it was out of this world.
“There’s one place where they play football,” one attendee told CTV News. “I ducked because I didn’t want to get hit with the football. It was very, very interesting”
Some described it almost a religious experience, adding they may never see the world the same.
We have a beautiful planet, and we have to take care of it, honestly,” another viewer said.
“Space is the ultimate mystery, you know, it’s the quest of our origins,” said Lajeunesse. “It’s about understanding our place in the universe.”
“Obviously, we will become an interplanetary species at some point in the future.”
Until then, he says the goal is to give those who aren’t billionaires a chance to see what’s out there.
You can catch THE INFINITE at the Arsenal contemporary art centre in Saint-Henri until November 7.