Non-fungible tokens (NFTs) have been one of the biggest drivers of adoption for blockchain and crypto in recent months. The rise of blockchain-based gaming platforms and metaverse applications has provided a site for NFT artists to thrive. Also, NFTs are becoming an essential marketing and fan engagement tool for musicians, athletes, and media personalities. Celebrity NFT collections provide creators with new revenue streams and help fans get closer to their heroes. Also, some of the top celebrity NFTs grant holders exclusive content and experiences that are verifiably unique or rare. As such, NFTs enable fans to show their commitment to their favorite celebrities.
In this article, we’re going to dive deep into the world of celebrity NFT collections. We’ll explore the top celebrity NFTs, the people behind them, and how they are changing the face of popular culture. Furthermore, we’ll discuss some of the use cases for celebrity NFT offerings and how they benefit audiences and creators alike.
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What are NFTs?
Before we dive into the top celebrity NFTs, let’s take a closer look at the technology itself. Non-fungible tokens (NFTs) are digital representations of assets that exist on the blockchain. They provide a unique and transparent record of ownership and can be used to “tokenize” assets on-chain. Fungible assets like fiat currencies, gold, and Bitcoin are useful as a unit of account and medium of exchange. Also, they are interchangeable. That is to say, if you take out a $100 loan in USD, you don’t need to repay it using the same banknotes.
However, non-fungible assets are unique. As such, they come in handy for things like in-game items, art, music, digital collectibles, and virtual real estate. Furthermore, NFTs play an essential role in blockchain-based gaming platforms and metaverse applications. In particular, NFTs provide a transparent ownership history and proof of authenticity for rare and unique items like weapons, shields, potions, and characters. Moreover, all of this information is stored immutably on-chain.
NFTs have made headlines in recent months, with pieces from Bored Ape Yacht club and CryptoPunks selling for millions of dollars. Also, various celebrities are becoming advocates of NFTs by investing in them and releasing their own collections. Additionally, celebrities are collaborating with NFT artists to create exciting audience engagement opportunities and fan experiences.
Top 5 Celebrity NFTs
Nowadays, it seems like almost every celebrity is releasing an NFT. Major brands sector-wide are getting in on the NFT hype, with big names like McDonald’s and Nike already involved. However, not every celebrity has the same die-hard following that will follow them onto the blockchain and into the metaverse. Below, we take a closer look at the top celebrity NFTs.
Chart-topping American rapper Snoop Dogg is an OG in the music industry and the metaverse. Snoop is one of the most influential musicians in the NFT space and a prolific collector and creator of NFTs. In November 2021, Snoop Dogg released an NFT called “Decentral Eyes Dogg,” that sold for 188 ETH. The musician also released a collection of unique NFT avatars for the leading blockchain gaming and metaverse platform The Sandbox, in February 2022. The collection, known as “The Doggies”, boasts 10,000 exclusive avatars created from 150 traits.
In the same month, Snoop Dogg also released an NFT collection called the “Stash Box” in collaboration with Gala Games. The collection aims to assist in promoting his forthcoming album “Bacc on Death Row” and reportedly grossed over $125 million in sales. Also, holders gained early access to a song from the album. Furthermore, the hip-hop icon announced that the record label Death Row Records will become an NFT label and assist in the next generation of music distribution on the blockchain.
In March 2022, Snoop Dogg announced plans to release an NFT collection on the Cardano blockchain in collaboration with handmade clay artist Clay Nation. The rapper also indicated that Cardano co-founder Charles Hoskinson could feature in one of his upcoming music videos. Additionally, Snoop Dogg is an investor in several tech and finance companies, including Reddit, Robinhood, and Klarna.
Grimes is an American musician and electronic music producer. Her debut NFT collection “WarNymph” was showcased in 2019 and began selling via auction on the Nifty Gateway NFT marketplace in February 2021. The series of ten pieces raised around $6 million, with a range of unique and limited-run artworks. The biggest earner from the collection was a unique song and music video called “Death of the Old” which sold for almost $390,000. However, the majority of sales came from two works called “Earth” and “Mars”, each of which has thousands of copies.
Grimes was among the first artists to release music in the form of NFTs. Even before the format became popular, Grimes had been experimenting for several years with tokenizing music on the blockchain. The WarNymph artworks have gradually changed over time, with new iterations implemented prior to the sale of the collection. Furthermore, a percentage of sales from the collection are being donated to Carbon180, a nonprofit organization that removes carbon from the atmosphere.
American media personality, DJ, hotel heiress, and mid-2000s socialite Paris Hilton is advocating for NFT adoption like few others in the industry. Hilton released her first NFT in 2019, which won the prize for “Best Charity NFT” in the 2020 NFT Awards. Also, Paris Hilton released another NFT collection in April 2021
Hilton’s next NFT release, “Planet Paris”, is a collaboration with artist Blake Kathryn, released as a collection of three pieces via Nifty Gateway. Also, Hilton’s most recent offering, “Paris: Past Lives, New Beginnings” is a collaboration with NFT artists Dayzee and Superplastic, released on Origin Protocol. Paris: Past Lives, New Beginnings is another collection of three works that aims to tell the story of Hilton’s journey through the public eye throughout the last two decades and highlight how celebrities can take ownership of the media they create.
Actor and musician Johnny Depp is another contender for the top celebrity NFTs list. Depp has an extensive background in painting, which combines elements of freehand Pop Art and Street Art to create iconic portraits of influential media figures and celebrities who have inspired him.
Depp’s latest “Never Fear Truth” NFT collection was distributed via a fair random allocation in January 2022. Previous works include the “Friends and Heroes” collection, a self-portrait, and a fictional character in one of his son’s dreams. However, after the recent media spotlight on the Johnny Depp and Amber Heard defamation trial, demand for Johnny Depp NFTs has skyrocketed.
Additionally, Never Fear Truth NFT holders gain exclusive access to Johnny Depp’s Discord server, enabling them to participate and collaborate in an “intimate environment” with unique works and insights into future projects in art, film, and music.
In 2021, NBA All-Star and basketball legend Michael Jordan launched his own Solana-based NFT platform called “Heir” with his son Jeffrey Jordan. The platform aims to connect sports fans with their favorite teams, players, and brands. The debut NFT collection “6 rings” dropped in March 2022. The 6 Rings collection will grant 5,005 holders with “founding fan” status and provide exclusive fan engagement experiences. Each edition varies in rarity and design. Plus, the collection aims to foster collaborations between artists, sports teams, and fans.
Michael Jordan is no newcomer to the NFT scene. The athlete has invested in various NFT and Web3 startups, including NBA Topshot, Metaplex Foundation, and Mythical Games. Plus, Jordan is tokenizing classic clips from throughout his basketball career in the form of NFTs. The name for the 6 rings collection refers to Michael Jordan’s six NBA championship victories throughout the1990s with the Chicago Bulls.
Why Do Celebrities Release NFTs?
Releasing a non-fungible token (NFT) collection is a great way for artists, sports stars, and influencers to expand their audiences. Also, NFTs enable celebrities to engage with their audiences in new ways by including rare and unique perks like meet-and-greets, limited-edition merchandise, art, content, and fan leaderboards that reward the most dedicated followers.
The sports and entertainment industries are constantly looking for new ways to innovate in marketing and promotion. By releasing NFTs, celebrities allow their audiences to show their dedication. In some instances, this dedication is part of the game-theoretic dynamics that underpin much of the NFT and metaverse gaming world. However, NFTs provide artists with more than just merch and fan incentives. Additionally, NFTs allow artists to retain a greater degree of control over the sales and distribution of their works. Particularly in music, NFTs allow artists to receive a much higher percentage of royalties than a traditional record label.
Also, NFT royalty payments are lightning fast compared to releasing works via tradtional mediums. Plus, NFTs exist on public blockchains, which provide a greater degree of transparency than many other distribution models.
Where Can I Buy a Celebrity NFT?
Although some celebrity NFT collections are available through their websites, most NFTs are sold via an NFT marketplace like OpenSea or Rarible. NFT marketplaces allow artists to showcase their work in a decentralized manner. Also, audiences can participate in auctions and bid on their favorite celebrity NFT collections. Interacting with NFT marketplaces on Ethereum will usually require some ETH and a MetaMask wallet. If you’re unfamiliar with MetaMask, be sure to check out our MetaMask Tutorial article to learn more!
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Top 5 Celebrity NFTs – Summary
Non-fungible tokens (NFTs) are becoming an essential tool for sports teams, athletes, musicians, and celebrities of all descriptions. Some of the top celebrity NFTs are helping their creators to expand their audiences and engage with fans in new and interesting ways. Furthermore, celebrity NFT collections allow media personalities to retain autonomy and control over how their data and content are monetized. As such, NFTs are prompting the mass adoption of blockchain and Web3 technologies.
Despite the success of the aforementioned celebrity NFT collections, lesser-known artists and creators also benefit from this growing trend. This novel medium is lowering the barrier to entry for artists and giving them the opportunity to shine on a global stage. As such, NFT artists are in high demand as entertainers and public figures scramble to tokenize their works on the blockchain. However, art is not the only application for NFTs. The use cases for NFTs range from licensing and certifications to real estate, voting, healthcare, and beyond.
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