Top global anime brand Funimation (a subsidiary of Sony Pictures Television), has teamed up with Bigscreen, the leading virtual reality software platform, to program an ongoing slate of popular anime films, from My Hero Academia: Two Heroes to Attack on Titan and more, for Bigscreen’s massive VR audience. The virtual anime movie theater launches with over 30 movies, with additional new releases and popular titles added throughout the year.
To kick off the launch, Funimation and Bigscreen have programmed special weekend screenings of films starting May 1 with fan favorite Your Name.
“Anime has never been more popular and we’re pleased to be working with Bigscreen to bring new releases and classics to their audience,” said Colin Decker, General Manager of Funimation. “Anime has always been built around community and shared experiences. Enabling fans to connect through the magic of VR is a natural expression of our commitment to connect fans with the art and culture of anime through innovative experiences.”
The special live film screenings that begin May 1 are a chance for viewers around the country to co-view the movie in virtual reality. Bigscreen supports infinite concurrent viewers to watch live together in groups of up to eight people per theater room. The films are broadcast live on a pay-per-view basis at 6 p.m. Pacific (9 p.m. Eastern) and cost $3.99.
In addition to live events, Bigscreen also has an on-demand movie catalog of hundreds of 2D & 3D movies. After the virtual theatrical screening, films will become available on-demand (VOD). For the full list of upcoming screenings and showtimes, visit bigscreenvr.com/events.
“We are excited to partner with Funimation to host anime film screenings in VR,” said Darshan Shankar, CEO and Founder of Bigscreen. “Our unique platform enables people to hang out with anime fans from around the world and watch their favorite anime together.”
In Bigscreen’s virtual world, users can customize personal avatars, hang out in a virtual lobby and voice chat with other movie fans. Movies are streamed on screens inside virtual cinemas, providing a social movie watching experience. Users can enjoy films alone or invite up to seven friends to join them in a theater.
Bigscreen can be downloaded for free from bigscreenvr.com and runs on the Oculus Quest, Oculus Rift, Oculus Go, HTC Vive, Valve Index, all SteamVR headsets and all Microsoft Windows Mixed Reality headsets.
Upcoming Live Anime Events on Bigscreen: (6 p.m. PT/9 p.m. ET)
May 1: Your Name
May 8: My Hero Academia: Two Heroes
May 15: Akira
May 21: The Disappearance of Haruhi Suzumiya
May 29: The Girl Who Leapt Through Time
June 5: Sword of the Stranger
June 12: I Am A Hero
Anime Movies Available for VOD on Bigscreen:
Planetarian: Storyteller of the Stars
The Disappearance of Haruhi Suzumiya Movie
The Girl Who Leapt Through Time
Steins Gate Movie
Strike Witches Movie
Fairy Tail Dragon Cry Movie
Fairy Tail the Movie: Phoenix Priestess
Ghost in the Shell: The New Movie
Attack on Titan Parts 1 & 2
I Am A Hero
Parasyte Parts 1 & 2
My Hero Academia: Two Heroes
Boy and the Beast
Triguns Badland Rumble
Death Note: Light Up the New World
Death Note: The Last Name
Psycho-Pass: The Movie
Eden of the East: Air Communication
Eden of the East: King of Eden
Eden of the East: Paradise Lost
Assassination Classroom The Movie: 365 Days’ Time
Garo: Divine Flame
Black Butler: Book of the Atlantic
Sword of the Stranger
The School Idol Movie: Over the Rainbow