Animoca Brands to build Hollywood backlot studio in The Sandbox
Hollywood, known for creating vivid virtual worlds, is setting foot in their ultimate iteration: the metaverse.
Gaming company Animoca Brands is building a studio backlot in The Sandbox, a metaverse platform, in a partnership with Planet Hollywood, the firm said in a statement The partnership, dubbed Meta Hollywood, bought a virtual plot in The Sandbox, where one pixel of “land” costs about around 2.2 Ethereum, or $2,700. It didn’t say how many pixels were involved in the deal.
The metaverse has attracted investors who see an opportunity to build a virtual environment that will attract online visitors. Jamestown Properties, the owner of the 25-story landmark One Times Square in New York City, last year built a virtual version of the property in Decentraland, another metaverse platform. Jamestown President Michael Phillips told TRD in January he hoped it would attract people to the real property and that it was an opportunity to make money from content.
Cryptocurrency values have plummeted recently, however, meaning the price of virtual land plots have as well. In November, when Ethereum was at its peak, that same plot in The Sandbox would have been valued at about $10,500.
Animoca and Planet Hollywood are betting on the long-term success of the metaverse. Like at the Warner Bros. Studio or Universal Studios in L.A., visitors to the duo’s new studio complex can tour action sets, attend premieres and visit a museum filled with Planet Hollywood’s real-life memorabilia collection.
Other firms, including Metaverse Group, have dedicated land in metaverse worlds to building entire neighborhoods. Metaverse built a luxury fashion district and hosted a fashion week event in In Decentraland, where more than 70 brands showcased items online.
Decentraland doesn’t have a Hollywood district — yet — but has gambling, shopping and arts neighborhoods.