Despite all logic suggesting otherwise, sharks continue to captivate and rivet audiences, so much so that they’re still the only animals with a dedicated week honoring them. Yes, that’s right, Shark Week is once again upon us, and this seems to be a weeklong television ratings bonanza that simply won’t jump the metaphorical shark in terms of alienating millions of Americans. Once again brought to the masses by Discovery Channel (the network that brought us something other Shark Week, I’m assuming), Shark Week kicks off July 3 with a virtual reality twist.
The Discovery VR app is looking to take Shark Week to even more extreme levels this year, offering virtual and augmented reality experiences for viewers who really want to immerse themselves into the world of these oversized toothy fish. Specialized programming for Shark Week will be hosted on Discovery VR and can be viewed using VR headsets like the Oculus Rift and Samsung Gear VR. Some of these programs include Surviving Sharks, an underwater expedition with shark attack survivor and Australian Navy vet Paul de Gelder, and Dare to Swim in The Shallows, a behind-the-scenes look of the upcoming Blake Lively v Great White Shark film The Shallows.
Additional televised programming during Shark Week will also be accompanied by supplemental virtual reality segments or features. Andy Casagrande, an award-winning shark cinematographer, filmed a program around his pursuit of a missing group of great white sharks that he found off an uncharted island. The program looks at how this group of all-male sharks mate and have their offspring. While watching this program, viewers will be able to tap into the Discovery VR app to experience it in an immersive fashion. With a virtual reality app at your disposal and a week’s worth of shark-focused programming, the only thing that’s left for you to decide is whether or not you’re going to need a bigger boat.