×
You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

Jan Kounen Discusses Virtual Reality Experience ‘Ayahuasca’

Jan Kounen, the Netherlands-born French film filmmaker whose best-known credits are “Dobermann‎” and “Blueberry,” has delivered his most personal work so far with “Ayahuasca,” a virtual reality experience exploring shamanic medicine from the Peruvian jungle.

Produced by France’s leading VR outfit Altas V (“Gloomy Eyes,” “Spheres”), Luxembourg’s A_Bahn and Small studios, “Ayahuasca” was created by Kounen based on his multiple trips to the Peruvian Amazon where he participated in the Ayahuasca rituals. Guided by a Shaman, the 11-minute immersive journey recreates the psychedelic and spiritual effects of listening to meditative chanting and drinking a plant-based tea known as Ayahuasca which is meant to cleanse the mind and body.

“Ayahuasca” world premiered at the Tribeca Film Festival and went on to play at festivals in Geneva, Mexico and Arles. It has just rolled onto Steam, the video game platform and on the online store Vive HTC. The experience also bowed at the Diversion location-based and cultural institutions in multiple locations, as well as the Amsterdam Eye Museum.

“Only VR can give the possibility to share a mind-altering, therapeutical experience like the Ayahuasca medicine because we’re using immersive technology, as well as sensory techniques to bring you in, in a way that no film can do,” said Kounen. He said stepping into VR after having spent his career making movies wasn’t an issue because “they are two different things, like literature and theater.” “When you’re making VR content, the core is the experience in itself, not the narration and backdrop which are the basis in filmmaking,” said Kounen.

Popular on Variety

The director said “VR, like AR (augmented reality) triggers our senses, brings out deeper issues and makes us perceive reality differently, as does science fiction which often makes us reflect on our world.”

Kounen said he was fascinated by how fast the VR and AR technologies are evolving. “We started with two labs doing back and white VR and now we have labs doing colors, sounds, advanced technologies allowing you to go so much further and explore feelings and our relation to space and reality,” said Kounen.

Aside from VR, Kounen recently wrapped the shooting of his fifth feature film, “Mon Cousin,” a comedy with French star Vincent Lindon and popular Belgian actor François Damiens, produced by Eskwad. Pathe handles international sales.

AtlasV, meanwhile, is also getting ready for the release of Fernando Maldonado and Jorge Tereso’s animated VR “Gloomy Eyes,” voiced by Colin Farrell.

More Digital

  • Ayahuasca

    Jan Kounen Discusses Virtual Reality Experience 'Ayahuasca'

    Jan Kounen, the Netherlands-born French film filmmaker whose best-known credits are “Dobermann‎” and “Blueberry,” has delivered his most personal work so far with “Ayahuasca,” a virtual reality experience exploring shamanic medicine from the Peruvian jungle. Produced by France’s leading VR outfit Altas V (“Gloomy Eyes,” “Spheres”), Luxembourg’s A_Bahn and Small studios, “Ayahuasca” was created by [...]

  • 6 Underground

    '6 Underground,' Local Content Rank as Netflix's Most Popular in Asia This Year

    Netflix released lists of its most popular content in Japan, Korea, India and Malaysia on Monday, showing that a mix of American shows and local-language content best captured hearts and eyeballs in Asia this year, with Michael Bay’s “6 Underground” the only title proving a top hit in all territories. Netflix said the most-watched lists [...]

  • Ivanka Trump

    Ivanka Trump Confirmed as CES 2020 Keynote Speaker

    It’s official: Ivanka Trump, President Donald Trump’s daughter and adviser, will be on the CES 2020 keynote stage next month in Las Vegas. Ivanka Trump will join a keynote discussion on jobs and the future of work with Gary Shapiro, president and CEO of the Consumer Technology Assn., which produces CES (originally known as the [...]

  • Corinna Kopf

    Corinna Kopf Leaving Twitch to Stream Exclusively on Facebook Gaming

    The battle for gaming creators has cost Amazon’s Twitch another notable streamer: Corinna Kopf, a popular Instagram model, digital influencer and “Fortnite” Twitch streamer with millions of followers, is moving to Facebook Gaming under an exclusive agreement. On Facebook, Kopf’s first stream is scheduled to take place Dec. 30 at 4 p.m. PT at facebook.com/gaming/corinnakopff. [...]

  • Xumo

    Comcast Might Be the Buyer Free-Video Streamer Xumo Has Been Seeking

    Comcast is in advanced discussions to acquire Xumo, a free, ad-supported streaming service owned by Panasonic and Meredith Corp., the Wall Street Journal reported. Xumo has been shopping itself for months and had previously engaged in talks with prospective buyers including Sinclair Broadcast Group, Variety reported earlier this year. Comcast already has a commercial deal with [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content

男的把j伸进女人下面