Creating a Hyper-realistic Metaverse Sooner with John Gaeta - Step into the Metaverse podcast: EP34

Creating a Hyper-realistic Metaverse Sooner with John Gaeta - Step into the Metaverse podcast: EP34
đź‘‹ Hi, I am Mark. I am a strategic futurist and innovation keynote speaker. I advise governments and enterprises on emerging technologies such as AI or the metaverse. My subscribers receive a free weekly newsletter on cutting-edge technology.

In the last episode of the Step into the Metaverse Podcast, I had a chat with John Gaeta, a creator, inventor and an Academy Award-winning designer best known for his work on the Matrix Trilogy, where he pioneered form-bending innovations such as "Bullet Time", “Virtual Cinema” and "Volumetric Capture" to envision human, hero and god-like moments.

He was also involved in The Matrix Awakens from 2021 as Executive Creative Development, Executive Producer, Writer, and in the Unreal Engine 5 demonstration featuring the universe of The Matrix, which is a great watch for anyone who wants to know how close the metaverse really is. Recent areas of exploration include “Photo Anime”, “Nuvies” (Natural User Movies), “Holo Cinema”, “Immersive Cinema”, Mixed Reality, and The "Magicverse".

In 2015, John co-founded Lucasfilm’s Immersive Entertainment division: ILMxLAB. “ILMxLAB seeks to “Develop, Produce and Release premium, story-based Immersive Entertainment Experiences for Star Wars and other imaginative universes”. He served as its Executive Creative Director, overseeing content strategy and multi-platform portfolio development.

John and I discussed how important AR and VR are, especially regarding hyper-realistic content. We discussed the role of user-generated content in the metaverse and the infrastructure challenges of creating a hyper-realistic metaverse. Please tune in for more of our value-packed conversation.


  • [01:37] - Working on evolving forms of media and human experience.
  • [07:44] - The importance and future of AR, VR, and XR to the metaverse.
  • [14:54] - A metaverse founded on user-generated content and creativity, and the infrastructure challenges that will have to be solved to achieve that.
  • [19:34] - How people could potentially experience co-presence and co-existence metaverse worlds.
  • [22:36] - Entering an age of transhumanism that will be beyond our imaginations.


“The metaverse will be a forthcoming state of systems and state of mind” - John Gaeta
“Before any of the VR or AR interfaces, we will see the perfecting of virtual worlds be they open or controlled” - John Gaeta
“Augmented reality has a better chance of becoming massively adopted simply because it’s less of a behavioral shift for people to augment their everyday lives” - John Gaeta

If you are interested in learning more about the metaverse, you can order my book Step into the Metaverse here.

Dr Mark van Rijmenam

Dr Mark van Rijmenam

Dr. Mark van Rijmenam is a strategic futurist known as The Digital Speaker. He stands at the forefront of the digital age and lives and breathes cutting-edge technologies to inspire Fortune 500 companies and governments worldwide. As an optimistic dystopian, he has a deep understanding of AI, blockchain, the metaverse, and other emerging technologies, and he blends academic rigour with technological innovation.

His pioneering efforts include the world’s first TEDx Talk in VR in 2020. In 2023, he further pushed boundaries when he delivered a TEDx talk in Athens with his digital twin , delving into the complex interplay of AI and our perception of reality. In 2024, he launched a digital twin of himself offering interactive, on-demand conversations via text, audio or video in 29 languages, thereby bridging the gap between the digital and physical worlds – another world’s first.

As a distinguished 5-time author and corporate educator, Dr Van Rijmenam is celebrated for his candid, independent, and balanced insights. He is also the founder of Futurwise , which focuses on elevating global digital awareness for a responsible and thriving digital future.


Digital Twin