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Production / Funding - Ireland

Industry Report: New Media

Mark O'Connor to finance his next effort, Oui Cannes, through crypto currency


The Irish filmmaker is teaming up with Movie Coin with the goal of getting the production fully financed through NFT sales and crypto crowd investment

Mark O'Connor to finance his next effort, Oui Cannes, through crypto currency
Director Mark O'Connor

Irish writer-director Mark O’Connor, best known for his work on Cardboard Gangsters [+see also:
film profile
and the crime drama series Darklands, is teaming up with Movie Coin to finance his next endeavour, a comedy titled Oui Cannes and set in the French Riviera. Movie Coin is a crypto start-up which has previously financed a pugilism biopic, Prizefighter, starring Russell Crowe and Ray Winstone in the leading roles.

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Oui Cannes aims to become the first film fully financed through NFT sales and crypto crowd investment through the start-up’s platform. In 2012, O’Connor wrote and directed Stalker, a project starring Barry Keoghan and fully funded through a kick starter campaign.

Commenting on his financing strategy, the writer-director said: “I’ve always been very interested in crowd funding where the public gets to own a stake in a movie. It gives freedom to the artist and can eliminate getting stuck in ‘development’ for years. With crypto, the public can buy NFTs, which represent a stake in the profits of a movie and these NFTs can then be traded on the open market. It is a new model for film financing and it’s untested, but if we can make it work, it could change how films are financed. I think Screen Ireland, The BAI and other agencies do a remarkable job, but their resources are limited and because of this a lot of projects get turned down for funding so I think crypto crowd funding offers another route, which could even work as initial development or gap financing. If crypto start-ups such as Movie Coin could work with these agencies and avail of section 481 tax incentive, we could bring more investment to the Irish film industry.”

Last week, O’Connor has launched the first NFT sale for Oui Cannes, available on Open Sea, an NFT marketplace where the purchase of one of the NFTs will grant you a stake in the profits of the film. According to Open Sea’s official project page, each NFT represents a 0.14% share of profits from the movie.

“This is an opportunity for investors to own a piece of the movie. We are offering script pages from the film as minted NFTs and artist images, which all give the investor a cut of the profits in the movie. We also have hidden rewards attached to the NFTs written into the smart contracts, such as tickets to the premiere or a chance to walk the red carpet or a walk-on speaking role, in a similar way we did when we made Stalker,” added O’Connor.

The first main goal is to raise initial funds to shoot a promo to be showcased at the Cannes Film Festival next month and then collect €2.5 million to shoot the entire film in September.

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