The 59th Annual BFI London Film Festival has added a virtual reality aspect to its LFF Connects talks series. The BFI proudly announced this weekend that the mind who brought gamers “Alien: Isolation,” designer Alistair Hope, is set to speak in between the LFF Connects Art and Creative Technologies panels.
Clare Stewart, Festival Director of the BFI London Film Festival, said of the news, “film and games are two of the UK’s booming creative sectors, capturing the imagination of audiences globally and influencing international industry peers. Alistair Hope is a trailblazer who brings a very cinematic imagination to game design and we are delighted to welcome him to our LFF Connects series of high-impact talks exploring the intersection of film with other creative forms.”
Hope, who serves as the Creative Lead at Creative Assembly, will explain why game designers should be considered auteurs and why his game “Alien: Isolation” won three awards at the 2015 Develop Awards this summer and made it onto the best game lists of 2014 for PC Gamer, New Statesman and the Daily Telegraph.
Hope will also speak about his initiatives through Creative Assembly to host live on-stage developer sessions for “Total War: WARHAMMER” and “Total War: ARENA” at the EGX games convention at the NEC in Birmingham, a sponsored festival for disabled people using digital media.
The LFF: Games section will focus on film’s connection with other industries, its social impact and creative licenses. The announcement is fitting for the festival as it launches its first exhibition on Virtual Stories; visitors of the London Film Festival will be able to experience Virtual Reality in a showcase room at the BFI IMAX during from start to finish of the festival, October 7-18.
Through the BFI’s partnership with VR company Power to the Pixel Virtual Stories will show semi-interactive features like the dawn of life on Earth in “First Life,” narrated by David Attenborough; falling down the rabbit hole and entering the world of Alice in Wonderland in “Wonderland;” being on stage with Cirque du Soleil’s “Inside the Box of Kurios” and experiencing a Syrian refugee camp as a 12-year-old girl in “Clouds over Sidra.”
Hope will speak among a slew of industry experts on their respective fields, including Laurie Anderson, Christopher Nolan, Tacita Dean, Guy Maddin and Chris Milk. Hope’s talk will take place at Picturehouse Central on Wednesday, October 14, 4-5pm.