La Biennale di Venezia / 78th Venice International Film Festival

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The Venice Virtual Reality Expanded section of the 78th Venice International Film Festival, following the success of the 2020 edition, will again be held online, extending its duration from 1 - 19 September 2021.

The selection is complete for the Virtual Reality works of the 78th Venice International Film Festival (1 - 11 September 2021) of La Biennale di Venezia in the section titled Venice VR Expanded, which will be held on the following dates and venues: 1 - 11 September, on site (Sala Amici, Palazzo del Casinò, Lido di Venezia) 1 - 19 September, online and at Satellite Venues (14 venues, 10 countries).

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From 1 - 11 September, for the entire duration of the Venice Film Festival, the Venice VR Expanded Programme will be available on site for accredited festival guests, at the VR Gallery in the Palazzo del Casinò (Lido di Venezia), Sala Amici, upon reservation.

The Official Selection of Virtual Reality works in this edition of the Venice Film Festival may be viewed online thanks to our partner platforms, HTC's Viveport and Facebook's Oculus, using PCVR and Oculus Quest headsets.

The Venice VR virtual world, designed by VRrOOm within VRChat, will be the Venice VR Expanded hub—a fantastical virtual version of Venice and of our usual in-real-life VR Island Lazzaretto Vecchio, available to anyone with a VRChat account. Within our Venice VR virtual world, visitors can experience previews of the official selection and socialise with other visitors.

Accredited guests will be invited to "Meet the Creator" sessions, opening, and closing parties, and other performances and events. Within this virtual world, following the success of the 2020 virtual edition, Venice VR Expanded will feature a brand-new section, the Venice VRChat Worlds Gallery, with a selection of 35 virtual worlds, celebrating the creativity of creators using VRChat as a platform to build their own fantasy worlds. Additionally, 5 special events, including live performances, will take place in 5 different VRChat virtual venues.

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Venice VR Expanded will present 37 projects from 21 Countries and 35 VRChat worlds:

23 projects in Competition; 1 Special Event – Out of Competition; 12 projects Out of Competition – Best of (selection of the finest VR work launched since the 2020 Edition).

1 project developed and financed during the fifth edition of the Biennale College Cinema – VR; 35 selected worlds in VRChat in VRChat Worlds Gallery with 5 Special Events.

The Venice International Film Festival was one of the first film festivals in the world to demonstrate interest in Virtual Reality. The development of a VR Theater in 2016 sparked enormous interest among the participants of the Venice Production Bridge.

Starting in 2017, La Biennale di Venezia launched the first competition for works in Virtual Reality in an A-list festival, which was held for three editions, through 2019, in a venue on the island of Lazzaretto Vecchio on the Lido, judged by an International Jury. The online accessibility of Venice VR Expanded, born in the 2020 edition, represents a new commitment and a new challenge to guarantee that the Venice International Film Festival will continue to offer the experience of the rapidly evolving art form that is Virtual Reality.

The accredited viewers of the Venice Film Festival will have access to all the titles of the virtual programme. Furthermore, a special VR Accreditation will be issued to interested visitors who are not accredited for the festival.

The members of the International Jury of Venice VR Expanded are: Michelle Kranot, President; Maria Grazia Mattei; Jonathan Yeo

The Venice VR Expanded Jury will award the following prizes: Grand Jury Prize for Best VR Work, Best VR Experience and Best VR Story.

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Venice VR Expanded Satellite Programme / Accessible at prestigious cultural institutions in 14 cities from 10 countries around the world.

The works of Venice VR Expanded (1 – 19 September 2021) will also be available for viewing in the physical spaces set up at the following prestigious cultural institutions around the world:

Centre PHI, Montréal, Canada; Sandman Studios - Sandbox Immersive Festival, Beijing and Shanghai, China; MC2: Grenoble, Grenoble, France; Centquatre-Paris, Paris, France; Invr.Space, Berlin, Germany.

Meet Digital Communication - MEET Digital Culture Center, Milan, Italy; Fondazione Giacomo Brodolini - Laboratorio Aperto di Modena, Modena, Italy; Museo Nazionale del Cinema, Turin, Italy; M9 - Museum of the 20th Century, Venice Mestre, Italy.

Eye Filmmuseum, Amsterdam, Netherlands; Less Media Group - Moscow Museum of Modern Art (MMOMA), Moscow, Russia; Espronceda - Institute of Art & Culture, Barcelona, Spain; Virgile Film Yapim Ticaret Limited Şirketi – Iksv Salon and Kolektif House (Levent and Maslak), Istanbul, Turkey; Portland Art Museum & Northwest Film Center – Portland Art Museum, Portland, USA.

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Thanks to the generosity of these institutions, which form the Venice VR Expanded Satellite Programme, audiences who do not own the VR equipment necessary to view the works online, may enjoy the experience of the projects of Venice VR Expanded on site. Audiences can access the Venice VR Expanded programme by making a reservation directly with each venue.

Each of these institutions, from 1 - 19 September, will create a space open to the public equipped with VR headsets, in which spectators may view the projects in competition at Venice VR Expanded, the projects Out of Competition – Best of VR Expanded (including our VR Chat Worlds Gallery, a selection of 35 worlds and 5 special events in VR Chat) and the project developed during the fifth edition of Biennale College Cinema – VR, plus a Special Event – Out of Competition (only ON SITE and ON SATELLITE, not ONLINE).

The Virtual Reality works in this edition of the Venice Film Festival may all be viewed online, except for the special event, out of competition, in partnership with HTC's VIVEPORT and Facebook's Oculus, with the support of VRChat and VRrOOm.

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