Meta has announced plans to air a New Year’s Eve special in virtual reality hosted by former NBA player and TNT basketball analyst Shaquille O’Neal.
The Shaq’tacular Spectacular
The Shaq’tacular Spectacular is a one-hour special produced for Meta’s social and virtual reality platforms. The taped event will air Dec. 31 in replay – all night long – with musical performances, celebrity entertainment and “an epic neon-lit performance” complete with a DJ set from Shaq himself.
The special countdown includes performances by Cardi B, Ludacris, Lil Yachty, Killer Mike, Whipped Cream and DJ Diesel (O’Neal’s DJ stage name), as well as appearances by former NFL player Rob Gronkowski and model Camille Kostek.
Shaq’s New Year’s Eve event will premiere on Saturday, Dec. 31 at 3:30 pm. PT, in VR on Meta Horizon Worlds and Meta Quest TV, available on the Meta Quest 2 headset, as well as on O’Neal’s Facebook and Instagram pages and Messenger’s Watch Together.
The hour-long program will feature Cardi B., Killer Mike, Ludacris, Lil Yachty, Rob Gronkowski and Camille Kostek.
“Virtual reality has become an exciting new way to experience, engage and interact with entertainment and subculture,” says Brad Haugen, president of Westbrook Media, one of the agencies involved in the production of the exclusive. We are proud to partner with Shaq, Media.Monks, the Jersey Legends team and Meta and invite people to spend New Year’s Eve with some of their favorite athletes and artists and feel like they are in their living room. The show features electrifying performances and hilarious, competitive video games, and it was a lot of fun for us to explore what we can do in this arena.
The special can be seen starting at 6:30 p.m. ET and will be repeated on loop throughout the evening.
Eric Shamlin, head of international entertainment for Media.Monks said, “We are happy to collaborate with Westbrook Media and Meta on this challenge, which is just one example of how great teamwork can deliver great entertainment that takes the hurdles to very high levels.”
Throughout the show, Shaq and the performers will be on a central stage surrounded by a skating rink, a basketball court and a main stage with a marching band, cheerleaders, skaters, basketball players and fans.
Spectators will be able to replicate the show’s dances on a virtual rink.
“This year we will welcome the year 2023 with new revisions and connections,” said O’Neal. “I’m happy to live this incredible experience with my favorite artists and athletes in the same way I would with friends and family around the world.” With laughter, great music and more, we’ll have fun on New Year’s Eve and welcome 2023 with a wonderful birthday party not to be missed.”
The special is produced by Westbrook Media, Media.Monks and O’Neal’s Jersey Legends Productions, in collaboration with Meta.
The project continues Meta’s push into VR entertainment, designed to bring people into the “metaverse,” following others such as a virtual concert with a PC-generated avatar of the late rapper Notorious B.I.G., Vanessa Hudgens’ “Eli Roth’s Haunted House: Trick-VR-Treat” and a virtual reality experience based on Jordan Peele’s “Nope.”
Follow us on our social networks and keep up to date with everything that happens in the Metaverse!.