The Use of Blockchain in the Film Industry

Web 3.0 technologies are making further inroads into a variety of traditional businesses, hence introducing innovation to previously established protocols.

This encompasses creative industries that have a long history, such as the music business, as well as more contemporary creative sectors, such as the film industry.

The new film Fuzzy Head will have its world debut this year at the Slamdance Film Festival, which is an Oscar-accredited film festival for independent filmmakers. The production of the film was made possible by the blockchain-powered crowdfunding site “The most crucial part of crypto and blockchain integrations in the film business will be increasing fan interaction through NFTs and opening up a new asset class to all different sorts of investors via compliant security tokens,”

Dapper Labs and Untold have formed a partnership in order to advance Untold’s technology and provide its programmes with more accessibility.

Other noteworthy movies, such as “The Comeback Trail,” which stars Robert De Niro and Morgan Freeman, have also received financial backing via this platform. It is not the first time that a film festival has seen the use of cryptocurrency and blockchain technology in films that are making their world premieres.

In 2019, representatives from the Filmio blockchain platform went to the venerable Sundance Film Festival in order to explore potential ideas for the blockchain-based entertainment platform that they are developing.

During Sundance Film Festival of the previous year, Liquid Media Group made an announcement about their first blockchain film streaming with a slate of digital panel discussions.

Additionally, the business discussed the effect that nonfungible tokens (NFTs) have had on filmmakers and the communities in which they work.

The movie “Prizefighter,” which was directed by Russel Crowe and released in 2022, used non-traditional forms of financing (NFTs) in order to partially support its production. The director described the movie as being “audience-driven.”

According to Aksu, the use of blockchain-based technologies by heritage directors and large festivals adds awareness to these tools for small filmmakers, who stand to gain tremendously from using them. These are also wonderful possibilities to build a genuine community that supports ground-breaking initiatives like blockchain.

The previous year, film director Anthony Hopkins was successful in selling all of the items in an NFT collection that was based on characters from movies that he had previously produced.

In addition, Quentin Tarantino developed novel film techniques (NFTs) based on his groundbreaking film Pulp Fiction.

Later on, he became embroiled in a big legal dispute with the film production business, which centred on allegations of copyright infringement.


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Bored Ape Yacht Club Enters the Movie Scene, Pairing with Coinbase

Seen as the face of the non-fungible token (NFT) market, the Bored Ape Yacht Club (BAYC) has entered the silver screen based on a series of animated short films called “The Degen Trilogy.”

Bored Apes will serve as characters in the film to be hosted by the new media arm at Coinbase. The crypto exchange is expanding its scope by testing the field of film production. 

The first three episodes of the series will be aired at an NFT industry event called NFT.NYC is slated for June.  

For consideration in the series, Bored Ape owners have been asked to submit their apes together with character descriptions to be scrutinized by a Hollywood casting director.

William Swann, the marketing director at Coinbase, noted:

“You can think of this as a love letter to the NFT tech that has provided so much creative liberation for artists. We really look at (Bored Apes) as sort of our North Star in the NFT space. They’ve created such a massive and engaging community.”

Upon release, the Coinbase website will serve as the gateway to accessing the films because viewers will be required to create a Coinbase wallet. 

The series will also tie in with the launch of Coinbase’s NFT marketplace, according to Swann. 

He added that the Bored Apes would not be the only NFTs aired on the big screen because Mutant Apes by Yuga Labs, the blockchain startup behind the Bored Ape Yacht Club, would get similar treatment.

Nicole Muniz, Yuga Labs CEO, stated:

“We’re seeing how NFTs are evolving to be vehicles of access and participation in networks, games, merchandise and now interactive entertainment. This is a breakthrough project and we’re excited to see how this shapes the future of Web 3 for all communities.”

Meanwhile, Yuga Labs raised funds worth $450 million in March. As a result, the funds effectively placed the blockchain startup at a $4 billion valuation. The team aimed to inject the funds into building a media empire that would predominantly feature NFTs.

This fundraising came days after Yuga Labs unveiled a metaverse project dubbed the “Otherside”. The teaser featured an animated Bored Ape NFT smoking Tobacco in what appeared to be a metaverse-themed world.

The Bored Ape made connections with other Yuga Labs-backed NFT collections housed in what looked like a spaceship. 

Image source: Shutterstock


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Blockchain Holds the Future of Hollywood, Outgoing WarnerMedia CEO Says

Jason Kilar, the CEO of Warner Media, believes that the future of Hollywood, a name synonymous with the American film industry, lies in the hands of blockchain technology, according to Reuters.

Kilar plans to leave the media company following its acquisition by Discovery, expected to be finalized on April 11. 

Based on the penetration of unique digital collectables like non-fungible tokens (NFTs), Kilar believes blockchain will play an instrumental role in transforming the entertainment business. 

He added:

“I think that’s going to be a potential wave that’s going to be coming to Hollywood, in the same way that the DVD wave came to Hollywood in the 90s. Obviously, that changed the economic fortunes of a lot of these companies.”

Hollywood will open new finance streams and intertwin storytelling with technology by leveraging blockchain.

Under Kilar’s helm, Warner Media was able to usher in the streaming era and other innovations like hybrid films and HBO Max.

With a career spanning from Silicon Valley to Hollywood, Kilar has advocated the integration of new technologies when it comes to opening new opportunities. He noted:

“Looking around a digital corner, blockchain will have a tangible impact on Hollywood and its possible collaborators.”

Therefore, Kilar trusts that blockchain technology will change the face of Hollywood in the post-pandemic era. 

Meanwhile, the global blockchain technology market is anticipated to reach $19.9 billion by 2026 from the current $3.4 billion value, according to a recent report by market research publisher Global Industry Analysts Inc.

The study noted that growth in this market would be propelled by next-generation innovations like blockchain-powered identity management systems in the post-pandemic era.

Image source: Shutterstock


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EXILE’s Daniel Eilemberg talks reimagining IP when building a multimedia franchise

The media and entertainment industry, in particular Hollywood, has a grip-like monopoly on the intellectual property, or IP, produced for public consumption. Writers and artists rarely maintain true ownership over the characters they create and have little to no say in the merchandise or content that is ultimately presented. Similarly, viewers and fans rarely have power over the stories that are told by the franchises they consume.

Let’s take Marvel comics for example. Many of the company’s most famous characters were originally created by comic book artists like Stan Lee, Steve Ditko and Jack Kirby. The late Stan Lee, however, ended up suing Marvel in 2002 claiming he didn’t get his proper share of the profits. And he isn’t alone. Currently, Disney’s Marvel and Steve Ditko’s family estate are in a legal battle over who gets to retain full ownership over many Avengers-related characters.

This tide may be changing, however, thanks to blockchain. To get more insight into intellectual property when it comes to blockchain, Cointelegraph spoke to Daniel Eilemberg, content president at EXILE, a media company that produces entertainment content across the U.S. and Latin America.

According to Eilemberg, “most of the IP behind today’s biggest Hollywood franchises isn’t new” because Hollywood tends to be “rather risk averse” when it comes to creating new IPs. Instead it prefers to “breath new life and extend the lifeline,” of established properties. Independent creators who do incubate new content tend to go through outlets like books, comics, theatre or podcasts first. The NFT space now offers independent creators an opportunity to produce art and build a fanbase without a big money intermediary.

That’s why EXILE partnered with start-up Curatible and painter Edgar Plans to found an original NFT project in-studio, rather than acquire one, called Lil’ Heroes. Its characters exist as assets on the Ethereum blockchain and the plan is to develop the concept into an animated TV series. Eilemberg described how the characters themselves and the potential of plot lines created by fans served as the foundation of the NFT collection.

“When I first saw Edgar’s characters and the universe they inhabit, we fell in love with them,” said Eilemberg. “They’re children playing out their fantasies as superheroes, and we knew that would really connect with audiences.”

Related: Pixel Vault raises $100M for NFT development platform

Eilemberg lamented that the idea of a distributed and transparent creative process was quite different from traditional film and TV development. Lil’ Heroes wants to challenge that using new IP and by leveraging its growing and loyal fanbase. The team aims to attract a community of young fans via a new kind of entertainment franchise, with the NFT drop as the first step in a multi-phase plan. 

Conversations between EXILE, Plans and Curitable — a startup that recruits high caliber artists to the NFT space — first took place over a year ago. Plans hand-drew every attribute and then modeled it in 3D to create the NFTs. The Lil’ Heroes collection dropped in mid January, sold out and trended first on OpenSea by volume in the first 24 hours. The collection’s reveal took place one week later, and at the time of publication ranked in 15th place in terms of trading volume in the last 30 days. Eilemberg attributed much of the project’s success thus far to the art itself.

“I think it’s a combination of an established artist whose characters have proven to be very appealing and approachable, a strong roadmap backed by a team with experience in the art, entertainment and NFT spaces, and the right project at the right time.”

Despite these early wins, the project has a long road ahead. According to the Lil’ Heroes roadmap, token holders can expect exclusive merchandise as well as NFT charity lots to be included in upcoming Sotheby’s and PHILLIPS auctions. Eilemberg told Cointelegraph that he’s currently in-talks with one of the industry’s largest metaverse projects. He suggested that, if all goes well, they’re looking to build, “an immersive experience that will incorporate art, music and NFTs.” 

According to the Lil’ Heroes website, part of the mission of this collaboration is “to build a bridge between the traditional art and the NFT world.” And each character is meant to be a “vessel to raise awareness on heavy, socio-political issues such as gender violence, racism and climate change.” 

Related: OpenSea monthly volumes top $5B as NFTs continue to mainstream

NFTs by nature allow for the distribution of value to their holders, especially to early fans, who in this case will gain access to the aforementioned activities, with the potential for virtual and real life events and to fractionalized physical art proposed by Plans. Eventually, EXILE hopes to produce an animated series in collaboration with Plans, which could be made available on streaming platforms. The characters’ stories will be created with input from its community, according to Eilemberg.

Lil’ Heroes is just one of many NFT collections with plans for the small screen. From 1inch Network’s crypto-funded Take My Muffin and The Red Ape Family featuring Bored Apes to Mila Kunis’ Stoner Cats series, these are all examples of projects that require user participation to access and influence.