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Steven Soderbergh Awards the NFT-Funded Film ‘Calladita’

Steven Soderbergh funded the $300,000 grant for the Decentralized Pictures network in April 2022 to test the viability of blockchain film finance. And NFT-funded “Calladita” got that grant.

Screenshot from the award-winning film “Calladita”. Source: YouTube

At the end of January, during Sundance, Film3 on the Mountain conference focused on innovative film finance. “Calladita,” a new film by filmmaker Miguel Faus, was selected as the winner of the Andrews/Bernard Award. Established by famous filmmaker Steven Soderberg and the Decentralized Pictures platform, the award grants $300,000 in post-production funding for outstanding English-language films and shorts for a maximum of three filmmakers.

“Calladita” tells the story of Ana and, according to Faus, is a mix of realism and satire that shows the Catalan high bourgeoisie. Unlike traditional films, the team behind Calladita utilised NFTs to finance the production. In 2021 and 2022 ever more filmmakers, notably renowned directors such as Spike Lee (who he talked about his project at the NFT NYC event last summer) and Kevin Smith, turned to digital collectibles to finance films and increase audience participation.

Faus shared that the film began as an insane idea that he might fund his first feature via an NFT collection. A few months later, 500 crypto enthusiasts not only showed belief in them but also minted their NFTs, and the movie was made.

Decentralized Pictures, a blockchain-based platform where filmmakers can submit movie pitches and pay a submission fee in the project’s native token, FILMCredits, was launched in 2021 by Mike Musante and producers Roman Coppola and Leo Matchet, and with $50,000 in documentary funding from The Gotham Film & Media Institute. Since then it’s been helping to transform the future of independent cinema.

Even though people might not be ready to invest in a jpeg avatar, the idea of directly funding and supporting their favourite creator could be the spark that starts a Web3 and Film3 revolution, putting filmmakers and their audiences in close contact with each other. Meanwhile, Shibuya is developing a platform that lets NFT buyers influence the direction of a film by voting on story decisions. Let’s see what comes out of the Film3 revolution, we continue to observe.