As the VR partner of Reading FC, we filmed and produced a stereoscopic VR headset experience at the team’s home ground in London, England. The kit promotion features behind-the-scenes 360° footage of the team and Madejski Stadium and was distributed across Reading FC’s social media handles.
We were thrilled to co-host an event to launch the 2017 football kit of Reading F.C. on Saturday, July 22nd. The club invited '100 lucky Royal fans' to the Director’s Box at The Madejski Stadium to witness the kit reveal in virtual reality. Senior Club Management were joined by both current and former players to assist Gate Reality with the press launch.
After an introduction to virtual reality by Gate Reality, the fans watched the virtual kit launch before they were given a tour of the club, ending in the Players’ Lounge, to see the new home and away kits in up close and personal.
We had great fun filming the video over two days. On Sunday, July 2nd, the filming began with eight former Reading Football Club legends and twelve members of the current squad, who gave up their personal time to take part in the shoot. Callum Harriott loved the VR - in fact, we couldn’t keep him away from our headsets! However, it was the former players, particularly Ady Williams, Jamie Cureton, and Martin Hicks who were blown away by the new technology.
The Director's Lounge
We shot in only two takes (they are busy guys) on our Nokia OZO VR camera. The eight lenses enabled us to capture the images in both 360° and stereoscopic 3D with full spatial audio from every direction.
Using Dolby's AtmosVR Suite, we were able to mix and position the captured sounds at specific points within the 360° landscape in post production. This made it possible for the viewer to only hear the sound of the player they were actually looking at. This realistic ambience completely encompasses the listener into the experience, making it seem like they are really sitting among the players.
The old match footage, featuring the players in attendance, was superimposed over the field by our talented post production team to bring to life the entire stadium.
The Training Ground & The Home Dressing Room
On our second day of shooting, July 11th, Reading FC manager Jaap Stam speaks from the training ground before revealing the new kit to the current players waiting in the dressing room. Liam Moore modeled the home kit while Joey van den Bergh modeled for the away kit. Many thanks to the manager to give us some of his time after an intense training session - he even changed into new boots for the occasion!
Stereoscopic footage filmed with the Nokia OZO and Insta 360 Pro was seamlessly stitched together and rendering in less than two weeks. Nuke was used for compositing and touch-ups before uploading to Scratch for final assembly and color grading.
Reading FC is an extremely innovative club, passionate about being at the forefront of new technology and using it to further engage and bring fans closer to the club and players. The sports world is going to be driven by fans who ultimately dictate how content is going to be consumed and distributed, and this will be through VR and AR. We are very excited about our partnership with Reading FC and will have some great content coming up in the next seasons!
Amanda Lockley is the Head of International Sourcing & UK Operations for Gate Reality.