RYOT co-founder Bryn Mooser launches a new documentary studio called XTR

Bryn Mooser, co-founder of virtual and augmented reality studio RYOT, mentioned he’s “hanging up my VR and AR hats to really focus on more, shall we say, traditional nonfiction storytelling.”

Back in 2016, Mooser sold RYOT to The Huffington Post and AOL (TechCrunch’s parent firm, now recognized as Verizon Media), and he left RYOT at the finish of final year. These days he’s announcing XTR, a production firm focused on documentary films and nonfiction series.

The firm’s name comes from the 16 millimeter camera that Mooser mentioned was portion of a “first wave” of tools generating documentary filmmaking far more accessible. With XTR, Mooser mentioned he desires to continue that method.

“Technology is front-and-center of this revolution that’s happening,” he told me. “What’s happening in documentary films right now is a direct result of cameras getting cheaper,” generating it simpler for any one to produce a “beautiful, professional film.”

At the similar time, he noted that documentary distribution was previously restricted to art-residence cinemas, HBO and “one row at your local Blockbuster.” Now, social media and streaming solutions like Netflix and Hulu have opened up new distribution channels that are bringing documentaries to broader audiences.

XTR studio

XTR studio

XTR will be primarily based out of LA’s Echo Park neighborhood, in a warehouse that will serve as workplace, post-production facility and occasion space. And rather than operating like a conventional production firm, Mooser mentioned he desires XTR to take “more of a tech startup approach.”

He explained, “We have a vision to really scale it out: How do we work with a lot of new directors? How do we work with all the platforms? How do we think about audiences globally?”

That strategy also includes outdoors capital. XTR mentioned it’s currently raised an undisclosed quantity of funding from former AOL CEO Tim Armstrong, Airbnb co-founder Joe Gebbia, Franklin McLarty, Christina and David Arquette, Josh Kushner, Lyn and Norman Lear, Bryan Baum and Zem and James Joaquin.

Whilst Mooser is officially unveiling the firm nowadays, he mentioned it’s currently establishing eight documentaries (which will be announced later this year) with partners like Vice Studios, Futurism and Anonymous Content material.

“There’s a actual chance to have a new firm in there, searching out for these new filmmakers, and [trying] to shift the energy balance a small bit,” he mentioned. “The way we do that is, we look for great talent and we empower them to do what they want to do … at every step of way.”