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The best kind of Trolls: Oklahoma City production company creates VR world for them to play in

OKLAHOMA CITY, Okla. - It's hard to tell where Kyle Roberts' play room ends and his business begins - or the difference between play and work.

"All the Ninja Turtles and the X-Men," Roberts said smilingly. "Reliving my childhood."

"Thankfully, we get paid to do this now," he said laughingly.

It's been a decade now since Roberts and a few friends started playing around with stop motion action figures mixed with live action.

"It wasn't really like a strategy. We just did this because we loved it," he said.

Roberts formed a little studio company called Reckless Abandonment Pictures. He made movies and commercials.

Roberts and company won over big firms like Lego, Mattel and even Dreamworks.

"We already had a pretty good relationship with Dreamworks," he said. "We'd done some work for them."

Stop, then go, stop, then go.

That's the reality of this type of animation.

But, speed that up, and it starts to make sense.

"We spend, maybe, 10 hours for a 4- or 5-second shot," Roberts said.

Not long ago, Dreamworks issued a challenge: create the first commercially-made 360-degree stop motion project.

It took hiring more than 70 people and several months, but they did it.

"Whenever someone tells me I can't do something, I'm like 'Oh yeah.' We'll figure it out," Roberts said.

The studio produced five short films in all, based on the Trolls toy line.

One is a wacky race through the Route 66 Park in Oklahoma City.

The short film is a walk through an imaginary toy room overtaken by Trolls.

It's best experienced through a pair of VR goggles.

"It was a lot of fun," Roberts said.

Robertss animators are working on all kinds of projects now.

One is for a local church.

They're tearing across the landscape and tearing down walls.

And, not one of them has to break off when their moms call them to supper.

"I think I just like to play and create," Roberts said.

Reckless Abandonment Pictures' 360-degree short film will be one of the featured exhibits at the deadCenter Film Festival's Tech Center.

The festival takes place June 6 -9 in Oklahoma City.

For more information on deadCenter, go to deadcenterfilm.org.

For more information on Reckless Abandonment Pictures, go to ra-pictures.com.

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