Kevin Smith has a new movie coming out but depending on who buys the NFT for it, they might be the only people who ever get to see it.
Smith—who most recently directed the Jay and Silent Bob Reboot and is currently working on a new He-Man series for Netflix—has decided to sell the horror anthology Killroy Was Here as an NFT. Short for “non-fungible token,” NFTs are a smart contract certifying ownership of (usually) a digital good via the blockchain. It’s a fairly complicated, controversial process that’s gotten a lot of press recently due to the ridiculous amounts of money being paid for NFTs—not to mention the environmental impact.
In terms of Smith though, him selling the film this way means once a person buys it, they can do whatever they want with it. “Whoever buys it could choose to monetize it traditionally, or simply own a film that nobody ever sees but them,” Smith told Deadline, which broke the news. “We’re not trying to raise financing by selling NFTs for a Killroy movie; the completed Killroy movie IS the NFT. And if this works, we suddenly have a new stage on which I and other, better artists than me can tell our stories.”
That Deadline link also has info into the bigger picture here, which is Smith getting heavy into NFTs in general. He’s created a site where he’ll start selling digital artwork, and tokens of varying rarity that will unlock material like clips from movies and even things related to Clerks III, which he hopes to make next.
It sounds absolutely ridiculous and yet Smith is no stranger to gambles that seem weird at the time he makes them. While this whole idea might seem odd to most people, don’t forget Smith was an early champion of podcasts. He took personal control of some of his recent movies, touring them around the country exclusively before they hit home video. And with this new venture he could, hypothetically, be creating a new outlet for film ownership and distribution.
The problem is that question mark of who is going to buy it and what they want to do with it. Because, as is the nature of NFTs, the person who owns can put it online and charge money to watch it, or let it sit on a hard drive and disappear forever. No word yet on how the film’s stars—Chris Jericho, Azita Ghanizada, Ryan O’Nan, Betty Aberlin, Justin Kucsulain, and more—feel about the director’s decision.
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