Korean Mom ‘Reunited’ With Her Dead Daughter in VR
Aided by virtual reality technology, a South Korean mother was recently “reunited” with her daughter who passed away in 2016.
“I Met You,” a televised documentary from the Munhwa Broadcasting Corporation, told the story of Jang Ji-sung, a mother whose 7-year-old daughter Nayeon died of an incurable disease. The program uploaded a touching clip of the virtual reunion on its YouTube page on Thursday.
Nayeon was digitally recreated and placed in a virtual world that Jang entered with the use of a VR headset. Jang can be seen standing in front of a massive green screen wearing her headset and gloves which appear to provide haptic feedback for a more immersive experience.
The green screen allowed viewers to also visualize how the interaction between Jang and her daughter would have appeared in real life. Jang was emotional upon seeing her virtual daughter come to life.
“Where have you been, Mom? Did you think about me?” the virtual Nayeon called out to Jang.
“I do all the time,” she responded.
They talked, held hands and celebrated a birthday party together.
Nayeon’s father, brother and sister were also evidently emotional seeing Jang relive her moments with her daughter.
To create the experience for Jang and her family, the show’s production team reportedly spent eight months designing and building the virtual world, Aju Business Daily reported. Not only did they work on perfecting the virtual Nayeon by using motion capture on a child actor, but they also recreated the park where the mother and daughter loved to visit in real life.
“Maybe it’s a real paradise,” Jang shared after the virtual experience. “I met Nayeon, who called me with a smile, for a very short time, but it’s a very happy time. I think I’ve had the dream I’ve always wanted.”