BaDoink Takes Motherboard Backstage for VR Porn Shoot

Oct 23, 2015 9:40 AM PST

HOLLYWOOD HILLS, Calif. — BaDoink CEO Todd Glider recently gave Motherboard magazine a behind-the-scenes look at virtual reality adult filmmaking, in a Hollywood Hills porn shoot with director Nick Melillo.

Glider explained that Melillo perfected the "Brazzers look" of "big tits, big asses, rich, bright color and high-quality lighting," a style he'd splash across viewers' VR headsets with the sort of spectral enthusiasm J.J. Abrams has for lens flares.

Euclid Virtual Reality Systems supplied the 180-degree VR gadgetry of two Sony a7RII cameras and Rokinon 8mm fisheye lenses, with a widened view courtesy of two Metabones Speed Boosters. Although a 360-degree camera setup of 12 GoPro Heroes was available, Melillo wanted more lighting control and could better immerse the Motherboard reporters within the same room. During the shooting, real-time video ran through Video Stitch software into an Oculus Rift VR headset, where dual camera footage can be turned into a 180-degree arc or dome. 

“Typically, 360 video requires a good deal of stitching before it looks clean,” said Samuel Burton, the co-founder of Euclid Virtual Reality Systems. “It's a process that is getting better and better as the space develops. We're hoping Adobe decides to add support for stitching in After Effects or Premiere someday.” 

When Motherboard gave the Oculus Rift headset a whirl, they agreed 180 degrees added plenty of realism, considering adult films are more about what's happening in front of the viewer. Then again, 360 degrees would certainly prove ideal for a large orgy scene, especially one with an "Eyes Wide Shut" mansion to wander around in.

BaDoink used the VR tech to shoot an extramarital sex scenario, with adult film actress Christie Stevens as a Hollywood wife seducing a vacuum cleaner salesman. She and Melillo explained the challenges of a VR porn shoot, where the cast, crew and director are confined to one or two fixed camera angles to establish a first-person illusion. “Doing most of the work was definitely tough, especially since we were limited to two positions, cowgirl and reverse. My thighs were burning!” Stevens said. 

“For VR, I basically had my eyes glued to the camera the whole time, and the male performer can't really interact with me at all except for a few hand movements, so it was kind of like performing a monologue, but with sex,” she added.

Despite the nascent nature of VR adult filmmaking, Glider sees a bright future with the addition of haptic feedback devices. “Adult entertainment is married to tech now,” Glider said. “You're not going to survive as a studio now unless you're on the internet, you're tech savvy.”

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