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Tuesday, Aug 9, 2022

Dome Fest Goes Beyond Star Shows

The inaugural Dome Fest West will kickoff in Costa Mesa with 32 immersive, 360-degree media films that will fully envelop viewers. 

Founded by Burbank business owner Ryan Moore, Dome Fest West runs from Oct. 8 through Oct. 10 at the Orange Coast College planetarium.

Along with the films, the festival will include panels, workshops, industry gatherings and parties. 

Moore, who is also the founder of Experience 360, a Burbank-based virtual experience design studio, said that it is clear to those making full dome immersive content that it just isn’t for planetariums or science centers anymore. 

“As more digital dome venues come online in the near future, moviegoers increasingly will be able to experience Hollywood-caliber immersive content – without wearing bulky VR headsets,” Moore said in a statement.

The goals behind Dome Fest West are to introduce new audiences to the full dome medium; support creators and technology across all facets of the dome sector; bring together the Hollywood creative community, tastemakers and technology experts working in the full dome industry to educate, entertain and inspire each other; and highlight the most creative and marketable dome content produced around the world, the festival said in a release. 

Event organizers expect up to 1,500 immersive filmmakers to attend the festival. In addition to Dome Fest West, that same weekend there are three other dome-focused festivals taking place in Germany, the United Kingdom and Australia. 

A team of jurors delegated by participating festivals will bestow #BestOfEarth Awards across five categories including Best Feature Film, Best Science and Education Film, Best Art and Experimental, Best Short and a Juror’s Choice Award to honor creativity and innovation in full dome media projects, the festival said in its release. 

Among the films to be shown at the festival are: 

“Atlas of a Changing Earth,” directed by Tom Lucas, conveys the story of how a revolution in one of the most basic of all human enterprises – the making of maps – is shedding new light on our planet’s evolution in the wake of rising global temperatures.

“Beautifica,” directed by Michael Saul, is a celebration of life. Mixed in 7.0 Surround Sound, this synergy of uplifting music and stunning visuals has been designed to transport the audience into an altered sense of time and space.

“Living Worlds,” directed by Ryan Wyatt, explores how life and our planet have evolved together, and how that informs our search for life elsewhere‚ throughout our solar system and beyond.

The films range in duration from 4 minutes to 56 minutes and include both live action and animated features.

“Cutting-edge technology innovations have enabled filmmakers to bring compelling new immersive stories and experiences that are fundamentally different than film or television,” Moore said in his statement. 

To date, Dome Fest West sponsors include Moore’s Experience 360; COSM, with facilities in Los Angeles; Vortex Immersion Media; nonprofit trade group IMERSA; c3: Center for Conscious Creativity and Festoon, a full dome content software developer in the United Kingdom. 


Mark Madler
Mark Madler
Mark R. Madler covers aviation & aerospace, manufacturing, technology, automotive & transportation, media & entertainment and the Antelope Valley. He joined the company in February 2006. Madler previously worked as a reporter for the Burbank Leader. Before that, he was a reporter for the City News Bureau of Chicago and several daily newspapers in the suburban Chicago area. He has a bachelor’s of science degree in journalism from the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign.

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