How Show Business Is Moving To The Metaverse6 min read
The NFT introduction over the past 24 months has captivated many areas of society. From a very novel concept that few people outside of the blockchain community had heard of, NFTs have become globally recognized and have started to become more widely used.
Perhaps one of the more interesting things about NFTs is the fact that they can be applied in virtually any industry. In the art world, they are being used to sell art pieces, with artists like Beeple selling their NFTs for millions. In sports, associations like the NBA have been releasing NFTs to commemorate current seasons. Even gaming has gotten NFT fever, with top companies like Ubisoft infusing their recent releases with NFTs.
It seems that if an industry deals with content of any kind, NFTs will find their way there. Now that projects have been launched in art, gaming, sports, and entertainment will the concept plateau or is it just finding its groove.
NFTs at the movies
If there is anywhere that NFTs can be applied, it’s the entertainment industry. After all, Hollywood is synonymous with content and NFTs have proven themselves to be a way to deliver content.
It already seems to be happening, especially for movies. Actor Kevin Smith, for example, has released his latest movie, Killroy Was Here, as an NFT. Those who buy the NFTs have access to the film and will also be able to influence the outcome of its sequel.
Director Quentin Tarantino has also released his cult classic film Pulp Fiction as an NFT and the trend of films being tied into NFTs is massively on the rise. Besides actually releasing the content, NFTs also seem to be a way to boost audience participation.
In the Smith film, fans can influence the events of the film’s sequel, which is practically unheard of for a major Hollywood production. This just goes to show how NFTs can change the status quo of the entertainment sector. Fans get to not only financially support the art that they love but can also feel like a core part of the creative process on a grand scale.
Take the most recent Coachella music festival that saw attendees from all over the world. Performances from the event were live-streamed millions of times around the world, showing that there is a demand even from those who couldn’t attend in person. Imagine then if these millions of people could buy a virtual ticket and attend the festival in the metaverse. The potential is limitless.
When it comes to creating merchandise, which has always been a big part of the entertainment industry, NFTs see applications as well. For example, the most recent Batman film had an NFT tie-in that featured digital renderings of the superhero’s iconic cowl. This, as we’ve seen, is just another way that movie fans can get a piece of their favourite franchise, akin to buying an action figure or t-shirt.
NFT-based businesses have picked up on this and are catering to the market. MetaFactory, for example, allows users to create “digi-physical” goods. These items can be used within metaverses, where NFTs thrive as commodities and as the interactive avatars themselves. As such, MetaFactory can be used to create merchandise that can easily be tied into entertainment projects.
One of its biggest selling points is that its assets can be used across different metaverses. If an NFT t-shirt was created for a franchise, it can be used on virtually every metaverse. This is particularly important given the fact that so many of them are popping up and are based on different blockchains.
Given its ease of asset creation, MetaFactory is certainly making sure that fan merchandise finds its way easily into the NFT and metaverse spaces.
Then, there are the NFT projects that are taking many of the classic Hollywood media tropes and bringing them to reality. Take GAMA, an NFT-based metaverse that is based around the idea of space exploration.
Using its NFT and the project’s native token, users can explore the GAMA Space Station and launch into “space” to harness energy. The NFTs are limited though, with only 10,000 in existence, but ownership of them can come with other perks.
Along with letting users enjoy the magic of virtual space, GAMA also offers them merchandise, as well as in-person events.
Imagine the possibilities that could be had from leveraging this sort of platform on a wide scale, especially considering Hollywood’s obsession with space adventure. Could we be entering the Star Trek universe soon? It’s a possibility.
Then there are projects whose goal is to make this transition to the metaverse easier. Take SIMBA chain, whose mission is to help existing companies, especially in entertainment, make the leap to the metaverse. For example, the company’s recent collaboration with Emmy-winning animated series Lost in Oz, by Bureau of Magic, will give birth to blockchain-based products and experiences for fans of the series.
Another one of its latest projects has been the development of an NFT marketplace for Club Brugge, Belgium’s most accomplished football club, going live this month.
Speaking on the announcement, Rob van Es, chief revenue officer at SIMBA Chain explained that “as the leading interface to Web3 NFT solutions, SIMBA’s partnership with Brugge signals a major shift in the way the business of sports will be played. An entire digital world, filled with fan-first oriented interactive moments, will now be available for Club Brugge fans.”
This has been a recurring theme among projects in the NFT space interacting with entertainment companies. In a similar way to most companies not wanting to set up an in-house coding team to launch a new website, they don’t want to have to create their NFT tools from the ground up.
To meet this need, several projects have been launched that cater to existing companies’ NFT needs, even down to specific industries.
With all these, there are still some fundamental issues that must be addressed, mainly NFT verification. After all, if they are going to be used on a large scale in entertainment, both buyers and sellers of NFTs need to be verified.
A solution for this exists through Ottó Blockchain by PLUGnet, a KYC-compliant smart finance blockchain that works to verify NFTs. It is multi-chain, meaning it works with different blockchains. As such, it can be widely applied to verify the identity of NFT buyers and sellers to the platforms that they use, something that will surely be in much higher demand in the future. All this is also done while remaining cost-effective for the businesses that use Ottó.
“Ottó does that while preserving users’ privacy without costing gas to do so,” says PLUGnet’s CEO and Ottó Blockchain founder Jeff McDonald.
A New Hollywood
The entertainment world is currently in a transitional period and NFTs seem to be at the heart of this transformation, and for good reason. They give their holders access to a more interactive fan experience and also signal a new era where the fans are in the driver’s seat of entertainment operations.
These efforts don’t only extend to the metaverse and the silver screen but also to real life. After all, the entertainment world involves in-person experiences as well. NFT project Drunken Monkey Members Club is doing both. Not only does the project offer less than 10,000 NFTs featuring monkey-themed artwork but also real-life VIP experiences for members.
Those who hold the NFTs can get access to a vast array of luxury venues and experiences all over the world, in cities such as London, Dubai, Las Vegas, Barcelona, Paris, Milan, Bali, Mykonos, New York, and Ibiza. The NFTs, which went on sale in March 2022, serve as a membership pass of sorts, in the same vein as the Disney VIP Club and the access that subsequently gives to Disney World.
Needless to say, as Hollywood evolves into the future, it is clear that NFTs will not be left behind.