EXCLUSIVE: Dreamlike VR Experience ‘The Key’ Set To Debut At Tribeca Film Fest

Anna has no memory of her past, but she continues to dream about a mysterious key.

Anna is having trouble remembering her past. She dreams about it every night, however, the details are unclear. The only thing she can remember is a mysterious key that she knows is somehow critical to unlocking her puzzling past.

The Key is an astonishing room-scale interactive VR journey that will have you making incredibly difficult and delicate decisions under intense pressure. As you put on your VR headset, you’re taken on a journey straight into the heart of darkness. Each step inside the virtual world is filled with twists and turns that will inch you closer to unraveling who Anna is, her mysterious past, and the significance of the cryptic key that she dreams about each night.

You’ll follow Anna as she guides you through multiple worlds to face a variety of challenging moments, each path immersing you further into the experience.

Lucid Dreams Productions director Celine Tricart and producer Gloria Bradbury partnered with the Oculus VR for Good Creators Lab, to push storytelling in a compelling new direction. The experience promises to transport you into a fantastical virtual world, where conundrums come to life in a way that will challenge your expectation of reality – and deliver an incredibly powerful message at the end.

VR is both a visual and audio experience. Together, they trick your brain into thinking you’re somewhere other than the real world. “With VR, sound is an important part of the experience,” said Bradbury. To bring an additional layer of personality to The Key, Tricart and Bradbury turned to the talents of Arrested Development actress, Alia Shawkat, who plays the voice of Anna.

Image Credit: Lucid Dreams Productions

“We are thrilled to be working with Alia on “The Key”. With her high attention to detail, she brings the voice we needed to complete this project,” said Tricart in an official press release, adding, “Finding the exact quantity of information you need to communicate in a VR experience is tricky. Alia’s voice provides the emotion to balance out the intricate details I’m communicating with the script.”

In The Key, the character of Anna is someone who represents empowerment—the ability to change alter social fairness and instill justice; a role Shawkat embraced head-on.

“Finding the exact quantity of information you need to communicate in a VR experience is tricky. Alia’s voice provides the emotion to balance out the intricate details I’m communicating with the script,” said Tricart.

Image Credit: Tribeca Film Festival

Celine Tricart co-directed and produced Maria Bello’s powerful Sun Ladies, a VR experience centered around the women Yazidi fighting ISIS in Iraq. Sun Ladies made its world premiere at the 2018 Sundance Film Festival and screened at SXSW, HotDocs, Cannes NEXT, Beijing Film Festival, and various other high-profile festivals.

For the project, Tricart traveled through ISIS-held territory to meet the women soldiers at the border between Iraq and Syria and record their stories. Sun Ladies won Best VR Documentary at the World VR Forum and a Lumiere Award for Best 360 Film.

The Key runs 15 minutes and will make its world premiere at the Tribeca Film Festival in the Immersive Virtual Arcade. Screenings will be held Friday, April 26th through Saturday, May 4th. Tickets to experience The Key can be purchased via the festival website here.

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