Imagine being able to walk up and talk to R2-D2 and C-3PO and have a conversation — in your living room. A few steps away is a speeder bike; you hop on it and soar across the desert sands of Tatooine. With a few clicks of a button, you turn off the Star Wars app and load up one for Jurassic Park. Moments later, you're petting a velociraptor.

Sounds like science fiction — the kind of thing Captain Picard and his crew used to do on the Holodeck.

Lucasfilm, ILM and Skywalker Sound are collaborating to bring this dream to fruition, thanks to the wonders of virtual reality. It's a brand new division of Lucasfilm called the ILM Experience Lab, or "ILMxLAB." And the best part — that stuff about Star Wars? It wasn't a random example.

They're actually making real Star Wars virtual reality experiences. This is a thing.

The aim of ILMxLAB is "to create immersive entertainment experiences" using technologies ILM has already developed for things like motion capture with real-time, high-definition graphics. Sounds like Holodeck technology to us.

So where can you experience the stuff ILMxLAB is cooking up? A variety of places. The announcement video below shows ILM employees using VR goggles, projectors, and even iPads to experiment with virtual reality. The company's press release lists (*cough* Disney) theme parks as one possibility for deployment, along with "real-time cinema."

As the video explained, ILMxLAB is opening its doors to creatives who'd like to join them in developing new virtual reality "experiences," and you can inquire about that at the lab's new website. ILMxLAB expects to launch its first "experiences" later this year.

Say, isn't there something else coming from Lucasfilm later this year...?

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