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A First: Oscar-Winner Anthony Hopkins in Feature-Length Movie as NFT, 'Zero Contact'

Big Ideas, Big Vision; an Interview with Tech Founder and Entrepreneur Cameron Chell

Cutting-edge and ground-breaking underscore the premiere of Zero Contact starring Sir Anothy Hopkins and the team of Vuele (pronounced “View-lee”) with the first among firsts – a feature length movie sold as an NFT. NFT stands for non-fungible token. An NFT is an exclusive digital collectible that you can own, show off and sell, and it is based on blockchain technology. NFTs use the same type of technology that underpins cryptocurrencies to verify the authenticity of other digital assets like artwork, recordings, movies, and a wide range of virtual collectibles.

In an interview with Cameron Chell, co-founder of this new platform, he’s clear about the potential that Vuele has to transform the movie business. “NFT technology is changing our world right now, and we’re honored to be leading the charge in the film industry, alongside Enderby Entertainment. This partnership is another great example of CurrencyWorks’ innovation and skill within the blockchain space, and we’re excited to be innovating in the multi-billion-dollar film industry.”

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Something impressive in the concept of the new platform is the audience-friendly, non-tech nature of Vuele – you don’t need any special knowledge of blockchain or crypto, and you don’t need a digital wallet. All you need to do is join, log in, and if you want to bid on the auction or the movie’s collectibles, you need a credit card. Ease of use, innovative content, and the sheer joy of acquiring exclusive movie collectibles are a focus of the experience.

Title: Danielle Macinnes, Unsplash, CC0

Title: Danielle Macinnes, Unsplash, CC0

Inspiration from a Visionary

Co-founder of NFT platform Vuele, Cameron Chell is someone who has overcome tremendous obstacles to climb to tech heights and achieve a personal and career level of accomplishment that is unique, even among high achievers.

His advice to script writers, creatives and filmmakers is realistic and actionable. “Just do the next thing. Progress is so much more important than perfection. Tech – this is my canvas if you will – every hour there at least one, if not multiple moments, that I need to tell myself just to stay present in this moment.”

Cameron Chell, Co-Founder Vuele

Cameron Chell, Co-Founder Vuele

Most screenwriters can benefit from his advice that transcends any field, and addresses the creative process. “Two things prevent creators from getting to their goal, overwhelm and self doubt. So set the big goal and stay in the present. There are many things I can’t solve in the moment, but there is 1 thing I can do. So I do it.”

One of the reasons Script Magazine writers and filmmakers come here is for the community that we all need. Chell takes inspiration from creatives and makers as well. “I love to embed myself into a community of people that are also dreamers and doing things. The crazy thing about creating is that ultimately when we create is we want to self actuate – create something bigger than ourselves, so we need to face self-doubt and overwhelm.” Clearly the people Cameron surrounds himself inspired him and co-founders to launch a visionary platform and a daring project.

Perchek Industrie, Unsplash, CC0

Perchek Industrie, Unsplash, CC0

The Vision for a Movie as an NFT

The feature film Zero Contact will be premiered and rolled out as an NFT on Vuele over the next several weeks in limited-edition experiences, as digital assets available to collectors and audiences. Content ranges from the premieres of the trailer and movie itself, bonus content and a variety of other digital collectibles. This project will be the first feature-length movie for sale as an NFT worldwide on this platform or on any other, and the model is unique.

With talk of NFTs popping up all over the place, filmmakers need to pay attention because this is the future, and it’s here now with platforms such as Vuele premiering a movie that features talented cast and crew, an Oscar winner and an ambitious team. They are figuring out the next frontier in movie distribution, premiere, audience viewing, collection, enjoyment and user engagement. Vuele poses the question ‘How do we make a digital copy of a movie special and collectible?’ and then answers it. The company has created a marketplace of experiences where audiences and collectors can join, and then bid on memorabilia of a film, copies and special content.

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Movie making during the pandemic was beyond difficult, with seemingly insurmountable obstacles such as: little to no travel; few crew and cast willing and available; constantly changing rules and understanding of safety; shifting schedules and a limited understanding of what was going on. That the Zero Contact filmmaking team completed the project is remarkable, that they are going on to create a first with the release, even more so.

Zero Contact Movie Poster

Zero Contact Movie Poster

The Movie

Zero Contact is an ensemble piece that follows five characters based all over the world who are connected by their devotion to the late founder and tech titan, Finley Hart (Sir Anthony Hopkins). The team must work together to shut down Hart’s most secret invention – a machine that is either the solution to mankind’s problems or the end of life on earth. It’s a fitting plot for a project realized during Covid.

These filmmakers were inspired to reach beyond themselves and make a movie that would have been ambitious at any time: a logistical miracle that was remotely produced and shot in 17 countries, starring a multiple Academy-Award winner. While the movie was started prior to the pandemic, they capitalized on a unique situation, and then went on to plan a one-of-a kind premiere, available only to members of Vuele. The debut of the film on Vuele will occur prior to release in theaters or on other distribution platforms. It’s really an exclusive premiere.

Non Fungible Token, CC0

Non Fungible Token, CC0

The Team

The level of filmmaking talent is high as befits such a ground-breaking NFT movie like Zero Contact. The team is ambitious and experienced, including an executive producing team that Dan Petrie, Jr (Blackway, An Ordinary Man) and Dan Fellman (Logan Lucky) and Hakan Karlsson, producer/director Rick Dugdale (Intrigo Anthology, Recon), written and co-produced by Cam Cannon (USS Indianapolis: Men of Courage), production design by Tink, with cinematography by Edd Lukas; and producer, Peter Toumasis (Man on Fire, Domino).

The Zero Contact star is multiple Academy Award®-Winner Anthony Hopkins (The Father) and features acclaimed actors Aleks Paunovic, Veronica Ferres, and Chris Brochu among its ensemble cast.

Image by Elena Torre, CC Attribution Share Alike 2.0 License

Image by Elena Torre, CC Attribution Share Alike 2.0 License

Experienced founder and tech visionary Cameron Chell is one of the founders of Vuele, and is also the Founder and Chairman of CurrencyWorks, the blockchain protocol upon which the Vuele platform operates. He’s founded and co-founded additional ventures including Business Instincts Group, Draganfly, Raptor Rig, ColdBore, FutureLink, Slyce and Urthecast.

The Platform

The launch of movies like Zero Contact will open the doors to projects on all sides of Hollywood, including studio-driven movies, independent films and those from streamers as well. The new platform aims to involve audiences and develop new business models in releasing a film. The future of movie distribution will include more direct-to-NFT consumer premiere events which are both exciting and exclusive, with feature films and digital collectible entertainment content as NFTs made available to be watched, collected, and shared exclusively on Vuele. Audiences will be able to own Zero Contact in a way nobody else has ever owned a movie.

Vuele Logo

Vuele Logo

Vuele’s approach is to embrace Hollywood, positioning themselves as allies to cooperate and complement the industry. The Zero Contact NFT premiere is global in nature and will occur even before any red carpet, in-person premiere, movie theater opening weekend, or distribution streaming premiere. While that’s unique, there is also the shared experience of movie fans excited to own a special part of the movie, to be surprised by guest appearances and now the technology has made that possible.

With the world changing by the pandemic, a new window has emerged with Vuelle - the NFT window, an exclusive digital premiere. This is adding a new layer to the distribution windows and will ultimately be embraced by filmmakers of all types, with audiences being able to discover a level of interaction with entertainment, and ownership that they never had before.

The NFT release of Zero Contact will be staggered over time. There will be separate releases of the NFT trailer, auction of the film NFT, then special content, special editions, interviews and more. This gives stickiness to the platform, creating reasons for people to come back to Vuele, meet other like-minded folks, share, collect more and participate.

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The Future

We love movies, but beyond buying a DVD (which most of us aren’t doing now), clicking to purchase a download, or buying a poster, it’s difficult to ‘own’ some aspect of a movie. Vuele has created that opportunity, to buy, own and collect some of a movie’s greatest moments. Whether that’s behind-the-scenes footage, the first copies of a movie, exclusive content, exclusive Q&As, and memorabilia (#filmobilia) this platform is putting that experience into the lives of fans, audiences, and collectors. People like to collect things, it’s built into our DNA and now for the first time, this digital destination offers entertainment – and ownership. Vuele’s gives fans the ability to collect movie and media NFT collectibles, build your exclusive collection and trading them if you like. This new paradigm of experiential interaction with a movie is something both filmmakers and audiences will enjoy. If you’re interested in learning more about the Zero Contact NFT and the drop dates, sign-up for the Vuele newsletter.

It’s an exciting time to be writing and working in film with technology changing things around us, but remember everything starts with a great story. In the words of Cameron Chell, remember: “Focus on the exact moment you’re in, don’t worry about the future. It tends to get done if you do it today.”

Thanks to Cameron Chell for sharing his experience and vision, and to the team at Vuele for creating a new model of movie fandom and collectibles. Best of luck with the Zero Contact NFT premieres!

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