Escaping from the Dark

By:  Matthew Cooke and Adrian Grenier
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As many already know, we are in the final months of a new documentary feature film called The Survivors Guide to Prison– an investigative report on the world’s largest “corrections” system…

On Saturday April 18th we joined forces with our partner Bryn Mooser of and unveiled a Virtual Reality experience of what it’s like to be in solitary confinement aka “the hole” at Tribeca Interactive in NYC.

People who paid to see the latest in entertainment media got to do something I never thought I’d see in my lifetime. We put on a pair of VR goggles on people’s heads and transported them into a scary-as-hell 7 x 9 foot cell with no windows, a concrete slab for a bed and no way out for 23 hours a day.

There in that virtual reality people found out that over 80,000 Americans — some as young as 13 years old are also here in “the hole.” There are no rules for this. You could just piss off a guard, fail a drug test or be in danger of getting beaten up — you could do literally anything or nothing and find yourself in the hole…

Having experienced this little taste, nobody was surprised that spending time in the hole leads to massive mental health issues, increases the likelihood you will commit suicide by 500 percent and most useless of all — that you’re actually more likely to commit a crime (whether or not you ever committed one in the first place) after you’ve been thrown in solitary…

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