For years, Magic Leap has promised to deliver stunning augmented reality experiences that will outperform any other competitor, and a newly revealed partnership hints that the company may be able to deliver on those promises.
Framestore, the Oscar-winning studio behind many of the stunning visuals in Avengers: Infinity War, has emerged from stealth mode to announce that it has been working with Magic Leap for the last few years on content designed to be experienced on the Magic Leap One: Creator Edition.
"We are storytellers at Framestore, first and foremost; innovation courses in our veins," said William Sargent, the CEO of Framestore, in a statement on the company's website.
"The promise of Mixed Reality excites us enormously, and we are delighted that this collaboration with Magic Leap provides us with the chance to show the world the extraordinary potential of this new medium, as we experiment with new ways to share incredible narratives."
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But this isn't just another effects studio lending its brand to Magic Leap's launch hype. Framestore represents the best of Hollywood's digital effects technology. Earlier this year, the studio won an Academy Award for Best Visual Effects for its work on Denis Villeneuve's Blade Runner 2049, including the development of the film's memorable holographic character Joi.
The studio also delivered stunning effects work on Deadpool 2, Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2, Thor: Ragnarok, as well as on the upcoming films Captain Marvel, Mary Poppins Returns, and Detective Pikachu (with Deadpool's Ryan Reynolds as the voice of the most popular AR character on the planet).
On Tuesday, June 5, Rio Caraeff, the chief content officer for Magic Leap, talked about some of the company's work to bring groundbreaking immersive content experiences to consumers, but he didn't offer much in the way of new info about what content would be available and who might be involved. The reveal of Framestore's long-term stealth involvement with Magic Leap suddenly brings a lot of Magic Leap's content aspirations into sharp focus.
"Framestore has an impressive track record in pioneering the early adoption of emerging technologies," said Rachna Bhasin, Magic Leap's chief business officer, via Framestore's announcement. "As a Magic Leap early access partner they are ideally positioned to support companies ready to explore and innovate with the potential of spatial computing. Our partners are at the forefront of next generation content and experiences, and we're excited to be working with Framestore on several projects."
Now that we know what level of visual magic we can expect to see on the Magic Leap One: Creator Edition, the only thing left now is to find out when the hardware will arrive and if it will be priced at a level that fans of those aforementioned movies can afford.