Inaugural MIFF XR Commission for Virtual Reality Announced – Applications Open Now!

Melbourne International Film Festival are thrilled to reveal the inaugural XR Commission, which will have its world premiere on the MIFF XR platform alongside world-renowned XR programming in 2022. MIFF is one of the oldest film events in the world, celebrating its 70th anniversary next year with a slate of signature projects, of which the XR Commission is one.

Having presented a VR program renowned for its excellence and innovation since 2016, this year the program was rebranded as MIFF XR (extended reality) to recognise the rapidly changing nature of the medium, and with a view to encompassing augmented reality (AR) and mixed reality (MR) alongside VR. In a world-class Australian-first, MIFF XR was born as a fully digital platform that was free, available globally and accessible even to those who do not have VR equipment. Arriving on a virtual Swanston Street, attendees were invited to dive into the experiences dotted around the digitally rendered auditorium of The Capitol – RMIT University, a key venue in MIFF’s history.

With thanks to MIFF Major Supporter Ling Ang – who also supported the development of the MIFF XR Platform where the winning film will live – a philanthropic grant of A$80,000 will go towards the creation of an immersive XR work that celebrates, interrogates, and illuminates Melbourne – its history and future, its communities and inhabitants – as well as MIFF’s integral role in sustaining the city’s relationship with the moving image over the past seven decades.

“With the inaugural MIFF XR Commission, I hope to encourage more artists to tell stories within the virtual space. I want to help artists build a new collective language of storytelling – to tell histories from a new perspective, and to explore the challenges of today’s world in new ways” said Ling Ang. “I want Australian creators to be in dialogue with their international peers and I want audiences across the globe to be challenged in new and exciting ways. I’m thrilled to be supporting MIFF in the development of XR, and I can’t wait to see the inaugural commission at the festival next year.”

Submissions are open to Australian artists from all disciplines, whether it be filmmaking, digital media, game development, visual art, or theatre. The successful project will have its world premiere at MIFF’s 70th edition, to be held on 4–21 August 2022. In consultation with industry experts, all applications will be assessed by MIFF’s XR Programmers, who will generate a shortlist of projects. The MIFF XR Commission will then be selected from this shortlist by a panel comprising the MIFF Artistic Director, MIFF’s XR Programmers, and artist and philanthropist Ling Ang.

Find out more at the MIFF website here.

Applications open October 21 2021

Applications close November 18 2021

Successful applicants notified November 25 2021

World Premiere of the commission at MIFF 4–21 August 2022

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