Facebook says its time to shut down VR Content Division

Jason Rubin Oculus VP of Content announced facebook Oculus Story Studio award-winning cinematic VR division is going to shut down. Story Studio is the team within Oculus that focused on the creation of narrative driven virtual reality content like the Emmy award winning Henry.Facebook’s Oculus will now be focusing its efforts on investing in rather than creating virtual reality.

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Facebook invested more than $250 million in original VR content and would be putting another quarter billion into original content plays as it looked to give Rift and Gear VR users something to watch on their headsets told by Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg in October.

In 2014 Oculus Story Studio was founded to create original cinematic content for the virtual reality company. Dear Angelica its latest project. Last year the studio won an Emmy for its animated short Henry, a Pixar-esque story about a prickly hedgehog that loves to give hugs.The Story Studio team created an extensive VR painting product called Quill that allowed users to create content inside virtual reality.

The Wolves in the Walls, its fourth major project the company confirms it has now been canceled. Facebook spent $2 billion on Oculus in early 2014, and initially granted the company a lot of autonomy.

The impacted employees of Story Studio will reportedly have the option of either leaving the company to pursue new opportunities in the creative community or applying for new jobs within Facebook. Oculus representatives state that Facebook is going to be working closely with these people to help them find new employment but that nothing is guaranteed. This process will be applied to everyone including the senior management of Story Studio — a group that includes former Pixar employees Maxwell Plank and Saschka Unseld.


The closure of Oculus Story Studio is just the latest of a number of significant changes at Facebook’s virtual reality unit in recent months

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