NFT-based video platform Shibuya has partnered with the Bruce Lee Estate to create a Web3 presence for the iconic actor and martial artist.
On April 12, a preview of the upcoming plans was hinted at on social media, featuring a vintage video interview clip of Bruce Lee. The clip shows a transformation from real-life footage to an animated style.
On the same day, Shibuya introduced an open edition Ethereum NFT available for purchase until the minting process is completed, with no limit on the number of purchases allowed. Each NFT is priced at 0.008 ETH, which is approximately $15.
No-code NFT platform Manifold Studio reported that over 18,000 NFTs had been minted with 14 hours remaining in the minting process.
Shibuya co-founder and artist Emily “pplpleasr” Yang drew the artwork of Bruce Lee featured in the House of Lee: Genesis NFT. Bruce Lee’s daughter and the founder and president of the Bruce Lee Estate, Shannon Lee, collaborated on the design of the collection.
The Manifold Mint page has named the NFT “your ticket to the House of Lee,” but it remains unclear whether this NFT will have any future plans or utility.
According to a representative from Shibuya, the mint will continue until Friday and marks the initial phase of an ongoing Web3 partnership with the Bruce Lee Estate. However, no additional information was provided by the representative regarding this collaboration.
Shibuya is creating an animation featuring Bruce Lee based on the preview clip, which will be displayed on a video billboard in New York City’s Times Square during the NFT.NYC conference.
My last name is Lee. Bruce Lee. pic.twitter.com/hc678dzRgO
— Bruce Lee (@brucelee) April 11, 2023
Other Bruce Lee-themed NFT project
The Shibuya collaboration isn’t the first Bruce Lee-themed NFT project. In January 2022, Bruce Lee’s family company partnered with Ethernity, a community-focused NFT platform, to launch Bruce Lee’s first NFT collection called “The Formless Form.”
Ethernity’s press release revealed that the purpose of this collection was to “commemorate the life and legacy of the martial arts pioneer, philosopher and global action film star.”
Digital sculptor Raf Grassetti, Australian graphic artist BossLogic and famous concept artist and illustrator Anthony Francisco created the artwork for this collection.
Shannon voiced her gratitude for the opportunity to collaborate with talented artists. She also noted that her father believed “in honest self-expression” and that the collection would authentically spread Bruce Lee’s teachings and philosophy to the world.
Shibuya’s NFT projects
Shibuya’s Bruce Lee NFT project is part of the company’s broader objective to establish a prominent presence in the digital space.
The startup follows a “direct-to-community” approach. It enables filmmakers and web series creators to crowdfund projects. In addition to funding, supporters can also provide input on the creative direction of each project.
Its initial project, the animated White Rabbit series, features anime-styled art, allowing NFT holders to determine the narrative path after each episode.
Shibuya offered 5,000 NFT passes for the initial chapter of White Rabbit last year, each priced at 0.08 ETH with a maximum purchase limit of five passes per wallet.
Shibuya also collaborated with the well-known profile picture (PFP) project Azuki, allowing NFT holders to vote for the character they wish to appear in a White Rabbit cameo.
In December, Shibuya disclosed that it had raised $6.9 million in a seed round jointly led by high-profile venture capital firms Andreessen Horowitz and Variant Fund.
It also saw participation from notable angel investors such as NBA player Kevin Durant, celebrity Paris Hilton, Alibaba co-founder Joe Tsai and founder and CEO of Aave Stani Kulechov.
The company intends to use the funding to grow its team as it seeks more creative partners to produce further interactive, NFT-driven film projects to premiere in Web3.