U.K.'s Secret Cinema Has a Hit with Live Version of 'Prometheus'

Organizers attract over 25,000 recruits in June to interactive shows that had full endorsement of director Ridley Scott.

LONDON – U.K. movie event organization Secret Cinema converted a Central London warehouse into a futuristic spaceship for a month to bring to life a new format – "Live Cinema."

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Future Cinema, creators of Secret Cinema, put on shows from June 1, starting with a production of screened Ridley Scott's Prometheus, launched in tandem with the movie’s national theatrical release by Twenty Century Fox. The shows were produced with the full endorsement from Scott.

The interactive performances invite audience members to step inside the film and create a unique experience and journey, far beyond a traditional 2D or 3D viewing experience.

The line between actor and audience member was blurred with Secret Cinema's online community – it has 60,000 plus Facebook followers – signing up to take part in the London events and then the screening of the film, the identity of which is only revealed on the night of the event.

The organization's Prometheus production totaled 38 shows across 28 days in a trio specially constructed 3D cinemas.

Secret Cinema partnered with British-based SFX powerhouse Framestore on all digital creation and visual effects for the show.

The organizers also collaborated with Radiohead on creating a soundscape to score the parts of the experience using the track “Everything In Its Right Place” from the band's Kid A album in multiple dark spaces around the ship.

“Secret Cinema creates worlds that allow the audience to go deeper inside the film," said Secret Cinema creative director and founder Fabien Riggall.  "Audiences are looking to feel more connected and be part of an experience. Ridley Scott’s Prometheus inspired us to push the idea even further. We believe this is part of the future of cinema."

For Scott's film, Secret Cinema organizers invited over 25,000 "Brave New Venture (BNV) Employees" to arrive at London’s Euston station throughout June, dressed in protective boiler suits and armed with surgical masks, gloves, crystals and various religious artifacts.

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Recruits were asked to register for various professions in advance with a mysterious company called Brave New Ventures before being transported into the world of Prometheus with original props from the film, including rover trucks, parts of the film's spaceship, including the flight deck and the cockpit. 

Since its set up in 2007, more than 150,000 people have attended Secret Cinema productions, and plans are now underway to take its concept to New York, launching in the fall 2012.