US movie theatre chain offers free NFTs with ‘Spider-Man’ movie ticket purchase

The NFT code will not be delivered via email if the ticket is not scanned at a theatre. — AFP

American cinema chain company AMC Theatres is offering free non-fungible tokens (NFTs) to members who purchase or reserve opening-day tickets for Spider-Man: No Way Home, breaking away from tradition where moviegoers usually receive goodies like posters or movie merchandise for advance ticket purchases.

In a press release, the company said 86,000 Spider-Man NFTs will be made available to AMC Stubs premiere, A-List and Investor Connect members.

AMC Theatres CEO Adam Aron said in a statement that its cinema patrons and shareholders have been calling for the company to embrace NFTs. Over 100 NFT designs will be available, designed by UK-based animation studio Cub Studios.

The NFT giveaway is only valid for tickets purchased or reserved for Dec 16 showtimes in the US. Members will receive a movie ticket with their purchase and it must be scanned at the movie theatre in the US. The NFT code will not be delivered via email if the ticket is not scanned or goes unused.

The NFT can be redeemed from a website operated by Wax, which is a blockchain ecosystem that claims to be energy-efficient with a lower carbon footprint compared to other blockchain. An article by The Verge quoted an artist calling NFTs an “ecological nightmare pyramid scheme” due to the huge amount of power or electricity needed to operate NFTs on blockchain.

According to Reuters, an NFT is “a digital asset that exists on a blockchain, a record of transactions kept on networked computers. The blockchain serves as a public ledger, allowing anyone to verify the NFT's authenticity and who owns it.”

NFTs give individuals the opportunity to be the rightful owner of a digital item such as artwork, videos and even online trading cards. Some NFTs produced by certain individuals can fetch a lot of money. In March, a digital artist known as Beeple sold his work for US$69mil (RM292mil) at Christie’s.

Locally, Spider-Man: No Way Home advance tickets went on sale on Nov 29 at midnight. GSC Cinemas on Twitter shared that some moviegoers faced difficulties accessing its website and mobile app due to overwhelming traffic. Users on Twitter shared screenshots of how they were not able to select tickets or proceed to payment.

GSC Cinemas tweeted that it was able to rectify the issue within an hour. On Nov 26, it had posted a meme depicting an IT team praying to computer servers for the success of Spider-Man advance ticket sales. The movie opens in cinemas locally on Dec 16.

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