As the Hollywood Reporter put it recently, “NFTs have made the inevitable step into the world of film financing”, and several projects are claiming to be in their respective field.
With the rise of Web3 which, to those of you who are unfamiliar, is the third phase of the internet in which decentralisation will reign, monopolisation from huge corporations is set to decline. This, of course, trickles into our arts industries and now, inevitably, filmmakers are beginning to turn to crypto and NFT as a viable means of financing their films.
What follows is a list of films set to shoot or release this year, that are currently or have just completed crowdfunding through exclusive NFTs, available for anyone to purchase.
Synopsis: A Wing and a Prayer, is the story of Brian Milton, the man who traced the steps involved in Phileas Fogg’s famous round-the-world trip in Jules Verne’s Around the World in Eighty Days.
Director Niels Juul, who has three collaborations with Martin Scorsese under his belt - Silence, The Irishman and the upcoming Killers of the Flower Moon set up the production company NFT Studios at the end of 2021. He hopes to raise somewhere between $8m and $10m and sell around 10,000 NFTs, which will be available to the general public and large-scale industry investors. Buyers will receive a share of any box office profit, along with tickets to the premiere where they can meet with the stars. Currently, this film is ready to go, it just needs the capital to kick off shooting. Though there is no information online on where to purchase NFTs currently, shooting was due to begin back in April. We can assume the bidding is over and we hope to see A Wing and a Prayer in the media again sometime later this year.
Synopsis: After an affluent man leaves a rough sleeper to die in the cold on Christmas Eve, he’s haunted by a figure that may be a vengeful spirit - or his own guilty conscience.
“In the tradition of Get Out and Society, The Dead of Winter explores contemporary social concerns through the heightened reality of the horror genre”, says Stephen Graves, the film’s director. Goldfinch, an independent entertainment studio and film financier, is taking one of its funding programs to a whole new level by bringing it to Web3. The Dead of Winter is their first film to be launched via this new model, and supporters will be rewarded with tokens for allocating money to the platform, with those tokens being the currency you can use to purchase NFTs.
A collection of 10 pieces of digital artwork were available for purchase, by graphic designer Adam Relf who is known for his work on Star Wars - The Force Awakens. Though we aren’t certain of the total budget, following a successful crowdfunding raise, The Dead of Winter will go into production later in 2022.
Synopsis: Antara will tell the epic, true story of Antara ibn Shaddad, a black slave who won his freedom and became a knight, and one of the most famous poets in ancient Arabia.
In 2021, the Antari team launched the Arabain Camels NFT drop, which helped launch the film's IP. Arabian Camels owners can now visit the set, get acting parts in the film and tickets to the premier. This year, they introduced a further system whereby the public part-own the rights and earns a yield on their NFT while production takes place. The Arabian Camels community have raised the full $50 million for the film, which is due to start production in the Neom desert in Saudi Arabia later this year.
The production team includes director Tarsem Singh, who was singled out by Julia Roberts to direct Mirror Mirror back in 2012, and Marc Fusco, who worked as Steven Speilberg’s assistant for almost 15 years.
Synopsis: Calladita is based on the short film of the same name by director Miguel Faus, available to view here. It’s a character study about Ana, and through her eyes, a portrait of the Catalan high bourgeoisie, with a mix of realism and satire.
Branded on its website as “the first-ever European movie to be funded by NFTs”, Calladita is doing incredibly well in its funding efforts thus far. Of the four tiers of NFTs available to purchase, three are sold out. Those who purchase and NFT of the Web3 film will receive perks such as a private link to watch the film once completed, your name or ENS in the credits and access to a private Discord channel. The highest bidder will also be credited as an executive producer on the film - which now stands at 54.6 ETH (currently around £56,000 USD). On their website, you can also buy minted pieces of digital artwork by various artists, based on the concept and stills from the film.
Miguel Faus was named by Variety as one of ten "Spanish talents to watch" in 2021.
Synopsis: After getting locked in an ominous library, a depressed young man encounters three manifestations of his inner psyche and soon finds that he must sacrifice a part of himself or risk losing them all.
In this video on Twitter, the film's Writer, Director, and Producer, Geoffrey Koefe, explains how he’s always wanted to write films that “challenge viewers’ perceptions of reality” and Hourglass promises to be no different.
NFTs are available right now on the official Hour Glass Movie website. There are 3 tiers of available NFTs, each tier granting you perks such as exclusive access to the pre-premiere, access to their discord server and behind-the-scenes footage.
A “gold ticket”, the mid-tier NFT level, is on sale for 0.2 ETH, (currently around 218 USD). Thus far, none of the tiers are sold out - and the team aim to begin production in August to November this year, with festival circuits beginning in December. We are excited to hear more about this project in the coming months; fingers crossed the Hourglass team can pull together the funding they need in time to create this trailblazing thriller.
In April, Spike Lee took to Twitter to announce to his followers that he will be releasing his own series of NFTs. Lee’s collection, entitled The Visible Project, is a selection of NFT images from his 1986 feature film, ‘She’s Gotta Have it’ – a film praised for changing cinema, thanks to its Black female protagonist and use of a non-white American gaze.
3,945 NFTs are set to be released soon, and all will be images of Spike Lee’s Character - Mars Blackmon - in frames from the 35mm film. Though little is known currently about the future films Lee is planning and the projects his budgets will go towards, we do know the proceeds from The Visible Project collection aims to lower the bars to entry for film creators, while demonstrating how NFTs can serve as a viable source of funding.
We can’t wait to see how these projects, and others like it, turn out. It seems that crypto is set to change the game, making it easier for all filmmakers to monetise their work, and for fans to support creators they admire directly without interference from large corporations - which, in our opinion, is never a bad thing.
For information about how NFTs could help finance your next film, email us at email@example.com.