|Three Angry Men (TAM) is a single-narrative, multiple point-of-view augmented reality, in which the viewer/user becomes a participant in an abridged version of "Twelve Angry Men." In TAM, the user witnesses the drama from the viewpoint of one of three jurors, and her perception of the scene reflects the expectations, beliefs, and prejudices of that juror. The user sits in one chair in a physical space representing the jury room. Through the head-worn display she can see two other virtual jurors (as texture-mapped video) occupying other chairs in the room. The user herself hears the words of the third juror, whose seat she is occupying. At any time the user can get up, move to another chair, and assume the point of view (POV) of another juror. To represent the three viewpoints, three different six-minute versions of the TAM excerpt were filmed and edited. The actors interpreted their roles differently for each version, allowing the user radically different viewpoints on the same dramatic scene.
Written by Reginald Rose, "Twelve Angry Men" was originally a teleplay, presented during the "golden age" of television drama, and was then made into a film. In the past four decades, it has been a frequently performed stage play and has been made into a second film version. In Rose's play, twelve men of various backgrounds are locked in a jury room to determine the guilt or innocence of a young Hispanic, accused of killing his father. Although the original vote is 11 to 1 for conviction, the lone holdout manages to convince all the others to put aside their snap judgments and look at the case with both reason and compassion. The jurors work through the evidence and eventually all vote to acquit.
For technical reasons, TAM is a radical abridgement of the original. Three jurors (instead of 12) debate the fate of the boy in a 6-minute excerpt. Each of the three jurors is a clearly drawn character who contrasts with the other two: Juror A is the reasonable and compassionate man who originally holds out for a discussion of the boy's case; Juror B is an African-American, who originally votes guilty, but in fact feels sympathy for the defendant (who in our version is also imagined to be black); Juror C is a troubled man, who expresses violent prejudice against the defendant. In our excerpt, C clashes with A and B, but it eventually emerges that C has his own personal reasons for refusing to see that the case against the defendant is collapsing.
In TAM, the user wears a headset and enters into a jury room, a physical space with a table and three chairs. When the user sits down in a chair, the drama begins. The user can now see and hear two other virtual characters occupying the other two chairs. These virtual characters are represented using texture-mapped video, mixed with the physical surround (the jury room). By sitting in one of the chairs, the user assumes the identity of one particular juror (A, B, or C) and experiences the scene from that juror's point of view. The user can see and hear the other two characters as they deliver their dialogue; the user also hears the dialogue delivered by the juror whose chair he occupies. In addition, the user hears inner thoughts of that particular juror, representing that juror's reflections on what the others are saying. At any time during the scene, the user can leave the current chair. When he or she gets up, the scene stops. When he or she sits down in another juror's chair, the scene resumes, but the user now experiences the action from that juror's point of view.
This work was supported by a GVU Seed Grant.
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