Snapchat is partnering with film studio Screen Gems on a promotional lens for its upcoming release Underworld: Blood Wars.
Your excitement for the feature will likely be predicated on two factors: whether you’re a fan of the Underworld franchise (someone out there must be, as it’s on to its fifth film, with plans for a sixth) and whether you like donning silly facial graphics when taking selfies on Snapchat. But, wait there’s more. This time round, what seems like just another sponsored lens may turn out to be more significant — at least according to Screen Gems.
The production company is touting the augmented reality feature as a first for the visual messaging app, reports Deadline. The interactive 3D lens will not only allow users to transform into a vampire, but it will also create an immersive 360-degree environment, the inspiration for which comes from Underworld itself. Call it a hunch, but we’re guessing it’s going to be extremely gothic.
Snapchatters will be able to adapt the 3D environment to their movements by turning their smartphone. The promotional lens reportedly uses your mobile device’s gyroscope to create its immersive AR graphics. The tech sounds an awful lot like the functions offered by Seene, a startup that was snapped up by Snapchat earlier this year. The company is best known for its eponymous app, which creates 3D selfies and scenes using your phone’s sensors (including the gyroscope and accelerometer). Back in June, it was reported that Seene’s U.K.- and U.S.-based teams would be shifted to Snapchat’s headquarters in Los Angeles. With the announcement of the new 3D lens, we may have a better idea of the type of products Seene’s talent is building.
In the lead-up to the December 29 release of the Underworld 3D lens, Snapchat users will be able to “snap to unlock” sneak peeks by scanning promotional snapcodes when outdoors, and on TV and online.
In case you’re interested, Underworld: Blood Wars sees Kate Beckinsale reprise her role as the vampire death-dealer Selene as she battles to end the eternal war between the Lycans (werewolves) and vampires. Some may call it a poor man’s Resident Evil, but what do they know anyway? If you like guns, mythical creatures, and Brit actors prone to camping it up, then it may well turn out to be your jam.
This isn’t the first time Snapchat has released a sponsored lens for a film. In the past the company has partnered with Sony on a Ghostbusters AR feature, and a promotional tie-in with 20th Century Fox for its blockbuster X-Men Apocalypse.
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