MILC and The Film Verdict Make History With The First Metaverse Film Festival
After months of planning, development, and implementation, MILC, founded by Hendrik Hey, and The Film Verdict, led by Eric Mika, launched the first-ever film festival to emanate from the metaverse. The Alpha Film Festival (AFF) took place in the MILC platform’s Art Tower from March 3rd through the 7th, and despite very little promotion, the success of the festival surpassed all expectations and set the stage for future Web3 events.
Since its conception, MILC has aimed to bridge the gap between content creators and their audiences. The platform was created to build a sense of community and cultivate an engaging experience for users of all kinds. Despite the increasing popularity of the metaverse driving more and more people to create within the ever-evolving Web3 space, MILC’s platform has remained one of a kind.
With previous successful partnerships and events under their belt, MILC’s metaverse was the natural choice for the AFF, and with similar goals regarding the potential of Web3 and their work with film festivals, bringing this event to fruition with The Film Verdict’s team made the most sense.
“The Film Verdict is a disruptor. I am a disrupter. Hey is a disrupter. MILC is a disruptor. So, it was only natural that we collaborate and introduce how disruptors, like the Alpha Film Festival, can collaborate with traditional film festivals and offer a new entry point into film festivals for a new generation. The Alpha Film Festival was a real success all around and now we have a showcase to build upon. I am delighted to be working with Hey and his team,” said Mika.
Ben Nicholson, writer for The Film Verdict and short-film expert, curated the festival, which featured 30 short films from around the world, all centered around the theme of The Future. Of the 30 films, the main program included 12, available for streaming over the course of the festival.
Along with the films, there were three evenings of live panel discussions focused on the futuristic theme. Panel members discussed topics such as Film3, the use of AI for filmmakers and artists, and the currently blurred lines between gaming and film. Accompanying the panel discussions were live film screenings of short films that mirrored the topics broached on the panels.
True to the nature of the MILC platform, the event relied on participation from the audience just as much as the creators of the films. To enhance community engagement and participation, there was a poster competition with thousands of MLT tokens going to the winner.
In addition to the MLT tokens, 500 NFTs were made available for the poster competition and all ticket holders were eligible to receive one limited edition NFT, which will be airdropped within the next week.
Audience members also played a vital role in awarding a short film winner with the 2023 Audience Award, given to Baloji and his film Zombies. The festival was meant to be inclusive and engage the community, so there were additional public voting strategies for the official selection of the films and the festival poster design.
“The Alpha Film Festival was a great exhibit for an event with great quality. Together with industry partners and the audience, we want to make this brand big and relevant. It was also meant to be inclusive and a space for established festivals to expand into. The major advantage is that suddenly a lot more people can participate,” said Hey.
In the end, the attempt to bring audience members and creators together was a rousing success. Despite the expectations that the inaugural festival could be a small learning experience for organizers, the festival became something else entirely as more and more people attended. There were over 20,000 side requests, 19% from the U.S, 25% from Germany, and 16% from the U.K. There were roughly 200 tickets sold, around 9,000 streamed video assets, and 296 entries to the Art Gallery.
“The AFF was born, and it will be the most relevant film festival on Web3. Those who know us, know that we never start something without continuously expanding it with diligence and passion. It is one of our greatest strengths,” said Hey.
Hendrik Hey is the founder of MILC (Media Industry Licensing Content), a blockchain-based content licensing company aimed at democratizing the content media buying and distribution industry. MILC is a sister company of European media giant Welt der Wunder, which Hey also founded more than 25 years ago. For more information about how MILC empowers content creators in web3, please visit https://www.milc.global