Nicole Kidman fronts Etihad Airways VR film

Lindsay Bennett
By Lindsay Bennett | 30 May 2016

Australian actress Nicole Kidman is the face of Etihad Airways 360-degree virtual reality (VR) film.

The airline says it is the first time a Hollywood actor has starred in a virtual reality movie.

In the five-minute feature, viewers can follow Nicole Kidman in an experimental journey through one of its new airbus A380s flying between New York and Abu Dhabi.

The airline has used VR technology to bring to life its customer experience story. Each scene takes a theme intended to stimulate the senses of light, sound, motion and conversation.

Kidman and Etihad Airways CEO Peter Baumgartner say the VR experience provides a new way to communicate with audiences.

“The film demonstrates how, as an innovative brand, we continue to break down the barriers of convention and lead the way in intelligent communication and best practice not just within the aviation industry, but across the fields of marketing, communication and technology,” Baumgartner says.

Eithad Airways senior vice president of marketing Shane O’Hare agrees the film is a massive step-change in the way the airline presents itself and its product to the consumer.

Throughout the experience, the viewer meets and engages with a number of characters including the actress herself, her film director, an opera singer and even an Emirati guest with a falcon in First Class.

The film was created over a six-month period using state-of-the-art VR technology. Etihad Airways collaborated with the Barbarian Group, a subsidiary of Cheil Worldwide, and the creative digital production company MediaMonks to produce the piece.

Previously Kidman has been the star of the 'Flying Reimagined' released in 2015.

Other brands to use VR include Tourism Australia and Budget Direct.

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