Realising that the autonomous car is one of the next entertainment frontiers, Universal Pictures partnered with German startup holoride, immersive content studio REWIND, and Ford Motor Company to shape the in-car entertainment consumer experience of the future.
As shared and autonomous mobility proliferates, an opportunity arises for companies seeking to entertain and enhance the time spent in transit. This trailblazing project seized this opportunity and enlightened audiences on the possibilities that exist when data, technology, and creativity collide. It also introduced a new media category—Elastic Content.
Using this technology with Universal Pictures’ iconic IP, a pioneering, never-before-seen, in-car virtual reality experience was created.
Immersive experiences are still mostly visual, but this experience included the real-time physical feedback of the vehicle making the experience more intense, and making users really feel what they saw. The spooky content matched perfectly with the period the activation was live—Halloween.
Riders stepped inside a 2020 Ford Explorer from the designated pickup location at Universal CityWalk. Once inside the vehicles, riders buckled their safety belts and put on their VR headset and were transported to the mysterious re-imagined world of The Bride of Frankenstein. Working closely with Universal Monsters, REWIND reimagined the iconic monster for a modern-day audience, while developing a unique and gripping narrative.
Along the way, riders encountered interactive monsters and obstacles in a fully immersive, “Elastic” VR experience, complete with sound effects and visuals that reacted and adapted to every twist and turn of the journey and every nuance of the car’s movement. Ride length was always dynamic.
The experience got a great reaction from the more than 3,000 riders who tried it. It also achieved extensive positive media coverage with titles such as The Verge, Venturebeat, Variety, Engadget, TechCrunch, Forbes, VRFocus, CNet, Trend hunter, and many more, plus a piece on CNBC.