FADE IN: The camera pans low across murky water to a massive, low-lying building, hugging the shore under dusky skies. On the liquid surface, flickering red letters coalesce as the camera pans up to reveal the source of this mysterious reflection: an impressive façade, a glowing marquis, and high above the plate glass windows, a single word that relates limitless possibilities within: CINEMA.
One of the amazing things about SL is that we are not locked into the mundane – especially when it comes to shopping. I don’t mean just what we buy, but how it is presented. Themed event shopping ‘experiences’ seem to be becoming an even more frequent feature, often with some of the best content creators making limited edition items for each. Today, one such event is opening, and to my mind, unlike any we have seen thus far.
CINEMA is a full-sim, movie-themed shopping experience masterminded by RubyStarlight Writer, the tireless organiser behind Hottie Cooterati, a group that organizes similar events and experiences in SL. According to Ruby, ‘it’s a themed event, like some I’ve done in the past. Mostly for shopping for new, exclusive items from really great creators. But I don’t do anything boring and typical, so I really wanted to make it come to life as more of a movie going experience. So hopefully people will enjoy just being here, and not just feel like it’s another shopping mall.’
And yes, there have been many amazing full-sim shopping events, but here is what makes this one a little different, at least from a creative viewpoint: CINEMA is the first full-sim custom mesh build for such an event. No pre-fabs; everything, from the buildings to the signs and props, all made especially for this event, all mesh.
And who were the brave (and now exhausted) talents to take this on? Perhaps one of the most talented mesh-centric duos on the grid: Isla Gealach-Nayar of Cheeky Pea, and Kaz Nayar of Pilot.
We managed to get past the velvet rope to peek at the whole build last night, and were able to corner all three of these talents for some Hollywood-style questioning. While Isla & Kaz are no doubt up to the task, I asked Ruby why she picked them. ‘She knew we were soft in the head,’ interjected Isla, while Ruby declared: ‘they threatened to kill me if I didn’t let them do it!’
She then confessed, ‘well I’d never worked with either of them and had no idea what to expect actually (laughs)… I just mainly knew they didn’t suck and could make things pretty so I asked, and Isla said yes and dragged Kaz into it…’
Isla then clarified, ‘More like… I went ‘OH COOL!’ and Kaz groaned, hung his head, and said ooook in the most sad voice ever.’ Ruby added, ‘kicking and screaming probably…’ Kaz remained silent, as he was still working diligently in Maya as I made slackers of Ruby and Isla. But as we chatted (and Kaz did join in), the camaraderie between them all was clear, which is likely one of the reasons why this build turned out so fantastic.
Like many things, the project grew much bigger than any of them imagined at the start. ‘I think all 3 of us just … like… couldn’t let it be simple,’ laughed Ruby, to which Isla added, ‘No. None of us are “that’s good enough” sorts.’
‘We’re a bunch of show-offs!’ Ruby confessed… but we are glad for it! The result will be for many like a trip back to your 80s childhood. In fact, Isla very cautiously solicited my critical opinion on whether she got the Art Deco aspects right.
‘I mean this in the BEST possible way,’ I warned her, ‘it’s very post-modern.. totally 1980s does Deco. This is just what the new theatres opening in the 80s looked like, at the height of Miami Vice. I feel like I’m about to go in to see Raiders, or Ghostbusters!’
Isla was thankfully pleased, ‘that is EXACTLY what I was hoping for actually, because I was thinking of the cinema that I went to as a kid (in the 80’s)! The way cinemas SHOULD be.’
I think all visitors will have a similar sense of nostalgia, but my assessment came before I saw the Film Noir section of the build – and in that, Isla and Kaz got the Deco spot on. And if you haven’t guessed, CINEMA isn’t your average multi-plex, but a series of themed theatres that are full of shops that have made similarly themed items for sale. And I pretty much spent all my lindens in that Film Noir section, which is full of the most gorgeous vintage-inspired clothing, furniture, poses and props.Other themes include Romance, Action & Adventure, Fantasy/Musical, [Adult, oh yes], and one I expect will be incredibly popular with Prim Perfect readers: Sci-Fi (I might have picked up a mesh Star Trek-inspired uniform). Ruby informed me that ‘Each creator made 2 new exclusive items inspired by their theme… there will be other items in the shops too, but the new ones are themed.’ And do bear in mind, this is NOT just about clothes. You will find lots of things for the home, and many things just for fun – the Sci-Fi section is especially full of such items, including robots that utilise the new pathfinding feature by Moriko Inshan!
CINEMA is sponsored by Fennux, Cheeky Pea, Pilot, Exposeur, Auxiliary and Boom, and perhaps one of the most fun and creative results of this theme are the specially commissioned movie posters made by Strawberry Singh and Anya Ohmai (who also did all the cute and clever concession food you can get for free). These are the ‘official’ posters, but I’ve seen a lot more than this cropping up on plurk and flickr. Ruby told me, ‘a lot of people got inspired and lots more popped up! Which I love…’ I might have to try making one of these myself… Night of the Living Cheeky Peas or something…
I’ve focused this post on the amazingly creative build, because content creation this spectacular is what Prim Perfect is all about. I’m certain the actual items for sale will be previewed (and post-viewed) ALL over the fashion blogs in the coming days, but I cannot resist sharing one of my favourite purchases, this gorgeous ‘leather and lace’ collar by Joy Laperriere of .Shi (non-rigged mesh with texture-change options). My other favourite purchase, a silky and rather sheer chemise by Rosa Ray of Volstead, is a bit too risqué for this blog, but I highly recommend!
Even if you aren’t an avid shopper, do not miss seeing this amazing build! Though, as cliché as it sounds… there really is something for everyone at CINEMA. Opening today and running through October 31st. Do not miss!
See more of PJ Trenton’s CINEMA photos: http://www.flickr.com/photos/pj_trenton/8082790877/in/set-72157631759145044/