This past Friday, July 19th, members of the ILMxLAB team took the stage at San Diego Comic-Con and walked fans through our latest immersive projects as part of our Step Inside ILMxLAB’s Star Wars Stories panel.
Director Ben Snow, Senior Experience Designer Jose Perez III, Senior Producer Alyssa Finley, and Production Coordinator Sarah Barrick talked about Trials on Tatooine, Project Porg, and Secrets of the Empire, and gave fans the first glimpse into our latest project, Vader Immortal: A Star Wars VR Series – Episode II.
“Being a bystander isn’t as immersive as being the center of the story,” explained Alyssa Finley, who compared the Vader Immortal experience to seeing Star Wars for the very first time.
That’s one of the reasons that the debut episode of Vader Immortalhas had such an impact on fans. Instead of watching a character interact with the Dark Lord, fans have the opportunity to roam around his fortress, interact with the planet’s inhabitants, and learn how to use a lightsaber themselves. In Episode II, fans will have a Force “teaching moment” with the Sith Lord, and those in attendance got an early look at the scene in the form of some previously unreleased concept art.
“The first image is really part of the training,” Ben Snow said in an interview with StarWars.com. “The way we thought about this was, we wanted to give you the Vader equivalent of Yoda teaching Luke about the Force in Empire Strikes Back. So we wanted it to be slightly darker and more twisted. He talks about the power of the dark side as well as the things you can do with the Force. So in this moment that the concept art reveals, you see him starting to manipulate objects and he’s starting to show you how you can use the Force to create something. But then, of course, Vader takes it in his own direction.”
The next two pieces of concept art, one from Episode II and another looking back at Episode I, give fans a look at the Black Bishop, a mysterious character who appeared in the first Episode of the VR series.
“He actually knows more about what’s going on,” Snow told the SDCC panel attendees. Explaining that the Black Bishop plays an important role in Episode II, the director teased that fans will have the opportunity to learn even more about his background.
In addition to the concept art sneak peek, ILMxLAB also debuted six new Vader Immortal character posters. A limited amount of posters were given out each day at the Lucasfilm pavilion on the show floor, and attendees had the opportunity to collect Admiral Karius, the Mustafarian Priestess, the Black Bishop, Vylip, ZO-E3, and Lord Vader himself.
The Force has yet to reveal when Vader Immortal: Episode II will be available. Until then, fans can continue to speculate about the Black Bishop, and visit Vader’s fortress by stepping inside the story in Episode I of the VR series.