Now Showing in Second Life open island in the virtual world of Second Life has launched an experimental island in the virtual world of Second Life, according to a press release. They’ve built »a huge theater« on their MovieTickets island in Second Life, where you can go to watch trailers of the latest films and click through to the page where you can find local showtimes and purchase tickets. The theater build is actually pretty cool, with a spacious lobby and tall screening rooms that make a lot more sense than most of the screening locations I’ve seen in Second Life. I’m not sure there’s huge advantage in going 3D with this service, but MovieTickets apparently has further plans. open island in the virtual world of Second Life“We hope that the island will help stimulate the convergence of virtual and real world movie-going experiences through ecommerce and a community spirit,” said Joel Cohen Vice President, Business Development,, in the press release. The content on the island will be updated “on a regular basis,” and MovieTickets also plans to build “consumer-driven promotions with movie studios and media providers.” MovieTickets is already offering free (virtual) T-shirts, popcorn and 3D glasses to visitors for a limited time. The glasses don’t seem to do anything, but they look pretty cool.

Also according to the release, “Additional plans include using the island to conduct research within this unique test environment. These possibilities include administering interactive polling or even simulating innovative theater concepts for the exhibition industry.” That stuff sounds pretty cool. I’d love to see what they can come up with as a result of that kind of experiment. For now, MovieTickets island could just be a cool place to hang out and check some trailers. Let us know if you give it a thumbs-up or thumbs-down.


  1. cube3

    Im beginning to feel that someone has to critique the actual design and experiences of these “builds”.. stupid term, and possibly part cause for these obviously silly designs being executed.

    1.Desire – Movie trailers in SL- great idea.So much potential.

    2.Solution- Build a replica of a mall like movie thearte- complete with empty large spaces that will never have any waiting lines. A huge air conditioning unit on the roof for a place thats never gets hot, and of course a dozen movie theatres with 200 seats each(with no indivisual sit codes) in a sim that cant possibly hold more than 40-50 people at one time.

    No wonder i get the questions i do from those in corporate America looking to get involved in the 3d online world.:)

    Did get what they paid for, for they well served by the “metaverese consultants” of new ? I dont know. What do you all think?


  2. Aleister Kronos

    Dang! I missed this one – and I’ve been trying to get into this island for months!! Oh well… can’t win ’em all.

    Larryr, I’ve yet to visit the island, so can’t comment on your observations. But I am genuinely intrigued to know what you’d suggest. OK, SL innovation doesn’t appear to be order of the day here, but I’m not sure what else would work.

    For me, the key to getting a sticky site involves involving people. If they have a reason to come, then they will come. And that means avoiding stasis by keeping a site moving, with events and an atmosphere conducive to a good time. And I certainly don’t subscribe to the Field of Dreams notion that seems so prevalent in SL commercial builds.

    Also, I’m yet to be convinced that the population of SL represents a reliable sample of (in this case)’s target audience. And so, I’d be very wary of basing much on audience feedback if I was them.

    Tinks: there’ve been some successful machinima classes on Fox Atomic – and that might be one way of engaging with people. Or just show that word beginning with “p” that gets blacklisted on these comments!


  3. Len Bullard

    I don’t object to the movie trailers in a world metaphor any more than I object to them in a page metaphor. After all, the power of 3D is in the integration of other media just as with any hypermedia wrapper format.

    I agree with larry about the gratuitous use of pixels for things like air conditioners and more seats than the world can possibly hold. VR starts to feel funny and perform badly when the line between the V and the R isn’t respected. That is the stuff that should be pruned at the editor’s desk for the design company. I think if one is going to waste vectors, waste it on clica for gratuitous animation. The onset cues are better used to enhance the immersion.

  4. William Ward

    @Len: I tend to agree. I have a similar reservation about putting a bed in my house in world. If I’m laying around in a bed, I should be offline. If I’m smooching my girlfriend in world, I should be offline (and in her bed.) To a point, recreate the gestalt of the theater and leave behind the bits that aren’t material to creating the mental idea of a theater.

    Now, the obvious idea I’d be interested in is being able to actually transact business with MovieTickets in their sim. I happen to live atop a Lowe’s theater, and being able to pop in to SL and grab tickets before they sell out in world would be pretty spiffy. Obviously, I can do this by task-swapping to a website, but if they’re going to go through the trouble of showing up in-world, lets follow through with this 3D web model.

  5. Susi Spicoli

    I think it’s typical of the first generation “builds” in SL (of RL companies) to replicate what they have in RL. That’s all they can think of in many cases.

    Why not do machinima in a way that is more suited to SL and that exploits the possibilities, but not just for the sake of it. One example, OK I am a bit self serving here, is a machinima gallery I set up, where different machinima artists have each built their own small cinema which expressess their style and personality and where small groups of visitors can view their movies. You’d be amazed of the variety and creativity.

    One artist, who is always dressed as a rabbit, has built his cinema as a rabbit hole. That’s for the smaller groups, when you go with a few friends to explore. For larger groups, 20-30, the gallery has an open air drive-in/fly-in cinema, where people go for screenings, often with the director present. The cinema builds itself up for the performance, and self desctructs in a beautiful firework at the end. People site in open cars or helicopters, and can bring their own if they want.

    Aren’t those things more interesting than just putting a RL cinema into SL?

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