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Marvel Producer Arad to Turn Huxley Ethereum NFT Comics Into Film

Ben Mauro’s post-apocalyptic digital comic tale will become a feature film, alongside interactive metaverse experiences.

4 min read
Huxley, an NFT comic book series, will become a feature film. Image: Feature

In brief

  • Huxley, an Ethereum NFT comic book series by artist Ben Mauro, will be turned into a feature film.
  • Marvel film producer Ari Arad will co-produce the film via his Arad Productions studio.

The NFT-to-movie pipeline is spinning up, and another notable NFT project is set to make the leap from the blockchain to the big screen. Marvel film producer Ari Arad’s Arad Productions yesterday announced plans to turn artist Ben Mauro’s Ethereum NFT comic book project Huxley into a feature film.

Huxley is a science-fiction tale spread across six digital issues sold as Ethereum NFTs. Arad Productions has teamed with Web3-centric production studio Feature to create the film, and has enlisted Academy Award-nominated VFX supervisor Jerome Chen—a co-founder of Sony Pictures Imageworks—to help bring Mauro’s vision to a new format.

The first teaser trailer for Huxley, seen below, showcases the comic world’s post-apocalyptic world via CG animation. It’s billed as a “cinematic trailer,” however, so it may simply be setting the tone for the project rather than showing what the finished film will look like. Whether Huxley is ultimately an animated or live-action film has yet to be determined, a PR representative confirmed to Decrypt.

No release target has been announced for the Huxley film. The partners plan to release interactive, Huxley-themed metaverse experiences later this year “on the way” to launching the film, per a release.

An NFT works like a blockchain-backed receipt for a digital item, and can represent things like images, video files, and digital comic books. The market swelled to $25 billion worth of trading volume in 2021, per data from DappRadar.

The first NFT issue of Huxley was released in October, with 10,000 digital issues released at a mint price of 0.10 ETH apiece (about $390 then). A second issue has since been released, with four more on the horizon. According to OpenSea, secondary sales of the two issues have thus far generated over 1,920 ETH, or about $4.9 million at today’s rate.

Mauro, a concept artist who has worked on films like “Elysium” and “The Hobbit” plus the Halo and Call of Duty game series, launched his first NFTs in March 2021. Evolution, his first drop on the Flow blockchain, generated more than $2 million in sales. Soon after, Mauro told Decrypt about the impact that NFTs can have for digital artists.

“This is a very big idea that will help every artist in the world and change a lot of artists’ lives, I think,” he said. “It basically solves a problem that we’ve been having our whole careers with not being able to make any money with our digital creations. It’s completely revolutionary to me.”

Arad has produced Marvel films such as “Iron Man” and “Ghost Rider,” as well as other entertainment adaptations, such as the newly-released “Uncharted” film. His father, Avi Arad, was a co-founder of Marvel Studios and has also produced an array of Marvel films from multiple studios, including “X-Men” and “Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse.”

Aku, a young Black astronaut character created by Micah Johnson, was the first original NFT IP optioned for a film adaptation last year. Collectors of Aku NFTs may be able to help shape the film and future of the IP, Johnson told Decrypt in August.

Since then, successful NFT projects such as the Bored Ape Yacht Club, CryptoPunks, and World of Women have hired representation with an eye to enter other entertainment verticals, including film, TV, and more. Last week, actress Reese Witherspoon announced that her Hello Sunshine production studio will develop films and TV series based on World of Women.

Editor's note: A previous version of this story incorrectly stated that Avi Arad was producing the Huxley film, but it is in fact his son, Ari Arad. We regret the error.

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