The 2015 Tribeca Film Festival have announced its line-up of tech and innovation events including Storyscapes, the third annual complimentary showcase of interactive installations presented in collaboration with Bombay Sapphire Gin, and a variety of experiential programs covering a range of tech disciplines, from virtual reality to online privacy.

Showcasing groundbreaking exhibits in technology and interactive storytelling, Storyscapes will present five selections as public, interactive installations at the Bombay Sapphire Storyscapes Exhibit and Lounge from April 16 – April 19, 2015. This year’s projects celebrate a wide range of creative approaches to storytelling, empathy and immersion. Enter a ‘Door Into the Dark’ and discover what it feels like when your senses are lost. Explore powerful virtual reality experiences with immersive installations like ‘The Enemy’ and ‘The Machine To Be Another’. Uncover how you are tracked online through personalised storytelling in ‘Do Not Track’ or establish a digital friendship with ‘Karen’, the life coach that wants to get to know you… a little too well.

The deeply engaging nature of Storyscapes will extend to the lounge with interactive bars, custom cocktails, and a transportive design. For the very first time, expert Bombay Sapphire bartenders will guide guests on a discovery of their personal taste profile. Redolent of MOOD INDIGO’s pianocktail, guests have the opportunity to have their profile translated into a story of flavour: creating one-of-a-kind Gin & Tonic formulas unique to their palates. All the while, a dynamic projection will feature social conversations happening around #Storyscapes.

“I am hugely inspired by this year’s Storyscapes offerings—each one shows what can happen when story and technology come together in a meaningful way to bring forth a transformative kind of experience. We are thrilled to present stories that festivalgoers can interact with in profound and delightful ways,” said Kopp.

One project will be awarded the Bombay Sapphire Storyscapes Award that recognises groundbreaking approaches in storytelling and technology. The five Storyscapes interactive installations presented at this year’s Festival are:

Do Not Track

Project Creator: Brett Gaylor

To what extent are you being tracked?

In this personalised documentary series about privacy and the web economy, creator Brett Gaylor will reveal what the web knows about you— that is if you share your data with him. From mobile phones to social networks, and personalised advertising to big data, this project shows how the modern web is increasingly a space where our movements, speech, and identities are being recorded.

Door Into the Dark

Project Creators: Anagram

‘This is a labyrinth’.

Find out what it means to be lost in an age of infinite information. Using groundbreaking locative technology, this immersive documentary combines captivating storytelling with a visceral physical experience: feel your way into the dark—blindfolded, shoeless, and alone— along a taut length of rope that leads to a vivid aural world of real people who have been profoundly lost. Your encounter with these characters takes you deep into their sensations, risks, and illusions. To find your way into the light you must surrender to the unknown.

The Enemy

Project Creator: Karim Ben Khelifa

Two combatants from opposite sides of a war observe each other. We are in the middle.

This project, at the crossroads of neuroscience, artificial intelligence, and storytelling, takes us on an extraordinary odyssey through some of the most contested conflicts in the world. In the first chapter you are immersed in a virtual reality gallery, moving between an Israeli, and a Palestinian soldier. Creator, Karim Ben Khelifa is a conflict photographer who is pushing his work a step further with this creative investigation of the limits of empathy.


Project Creator: Blast Theory, developed in partnership with National Theatre Wales.

Karen is an app that mixes together gaming, storytelling, and psychological profiling. Karen is a life coach and she’s happy to help you work through a few things in your life. As soon as you launch Karen, she will ask you some questions about your outlook on the world. As she becomes more and more curious, Karen starts to identify things about you that she shouldn’t know. Where exactly is this going to end?

The Machine To Be Another – Embodied Narratives

Project Creator: BeAnotherLab

BeAnotherLab will be presenting a series of Embodied Narratives that will allow audiences to inhabit the body and life story of another person, while interacting with artefacts from their life. Imagine the possibility of creating stories that can be felt through your own body as something real. For three years BeAnotherLab has been working with an extended community of researchers, artists, activists, and members of the public to create performance experiments related to the understanding of the other and of the self.

‘The interplay between technology and entertainment continues to move at an astounding pace. In this age of multimedia consumption audiences are challenging storytellers to up their game in creating compelling content that not only entertains but is also highly personalised’ said Jane Rosenthal, co- founder, Tribeca Film Festival. ‘It continues to be our mission at the Festival to explore this evolution and foster a vibrant storytelling environment for all creators’.

In addition to Storyscapes, Stanford University’s Virtual Human Interaction Lab have teamed up to create a number of VR experiences at the Spring Studios creative hub that will allow visitors to travel as a marine biologist to the bottom of the sea; play quarterback in a football game; and walk a mile in the shoes of someone of a gender, race, or age, other than their own.

Events will also feature the TFI Interactive Summit, an initiative of the non-profit Tribeca Film Institute with leadership support from the Ford Foundation, on Saturday, April 18, and the day-long Games For Change’s Games and Media Summit on Tuesday, April 21 that will explore new and innovative platforms, including films that play like games, and games that incorporate film, all to inspire social progress.

On Wednesday, April 22, the Festival will host Tribeca Talks: Imagination.   Powered by The Hatchery, the all-day summit will feature panel discussions with some of the most influential, provocative and creative minds including Google’s Captain of Moonshots Astro Teller and AOL Chairman and CEO Tim Armstrong and asking: what happens when our wildest dreams become reality and what that reality will be in our not-so-distant future?

Speakers confirmed to date include:

Astro Teller

Captain of Moonshots, oversees Google[x] moonshot factory for building magical, audaciously impactful ideas that can be brought to reality through science and technology. Before joining Google, Teller was CEO of Cerebellum Capital, Inc., an AI-based investment management firm; CEO of BodyMedia, a leading wearable body monitoring company; and CEO of SANDbOX AD, an advanced development technology incubator.

Tim Armstrong

Chairman and CEO of AOL, a mass media corporation that serves nearly 250M global consumers and is a leader in the digital content, video, and advertising industries. Armstrong served as an executive of multiple internet and media companies, including President of Google’s Americas Operations, Snowball, Disney’s ABC/ESPN Internet Ventures, and Paul Allen’s Starwave Corporation.

Ashwin Vasavada

Project Scientist for NASA, Vasavada is a planetary scientist leading work on Mars. He has participated in several NASA spacecraft missions including the Galileo mission to Jupiter and the Cassini mission to Saturn.

Ping Fu

Chief Entrepreneur Officer 3D Systems (NYSE: DDD) works on the cutting edge of 3D printing at scale. Honoured as Inc. magazine’s Entrepreneur of the Year, Fu co-founded Geomagic, a 3D imaging software company, which was acquired by 3D Systems. The 3D technologies they developed were created to fundamentally change the way products are designed and manufactured around the world. She serves on the NACIE (National Advisory Council on Innovation and Entrepreneurship) at the Department of Commerce.

Jeremy Bailenson

Founding director of Stanford University’s Virtual Human Interaction Lab, Bailenson’s main area of interest is the phenomenon of digital human representation, especially in the context of immersive virtual reality. He explores the manner in which people are able to represent themselves when the physical constraints of body and virtually-rendered behaviours are removed. He designs and studies virtual reality systems that allow physically remote individuals to meet in virtual space, and explores the manner in which these systems change the nature of verbal and nonverbal interaction.

Carl Dietrich

CEO of Terrefugia, is an expert in liquid bi-propellant rocket propulsion, aircraft design & fabrication, as well as plasma physics & fusion energy. As an aerospace industry entrepreneur, Dietrich raised over $12 million of private capital, grew Terrafugia through the successful development of air-worthy prototype vehicles, and built a $30 million order backlog for Terrafugia’s launch product, the Transition.

Efi Cohen-Arazi

CEO of Rainbow Medical that is at the forefront of implant technologies to restore and heal. Cohen-Arazi has over 25 years of experience in the medical and biotech industry. Cohen-Arazi served as CEO of IntecPharma Israel, General Manager & VP at biotech giant Amgen, Senior VP at Immunex and General Manager, and VP at the Merck-Serono.

Anthony Lewis

Senior Director, Technology at Qualcomm leading biologically-inspired computing and robotics. Dr. Lewis is an expert in robotics and neuromorphic engineering with more than 80 publications and patents in these fields. Dr. Lewis directed a multi-faculty robotics lab focused on cooperative robotics at UCLA, and developed high-performance control systems for robotic hands and force feedback exoskeletons as a member of the technical staff for the Jet Propulsion Laboratory. He also founded Iguana Robotics, a private research company, where he spearheaded the development of biologically inspired robots.

Check in to our dedicated TFF 2015 blog for all the latest news and events running at this year’s Festival.