Whitney Houston, Quentin Tarantino … NFTs between exclusivity and legal disputes

(ETX Daily Up) – Unpublished tracks are the holy grail of any music lover. Especially those of missing artists like Whitney Houston. Her heirs will soon put on sale a song she had recorded during her teenage years … in the form of NFT. A digital object that is sure to arouse the interest of collectors.

The artist’s wealth manager, The Estate of Whitney Houston, has teamed up with NFT’s sales platform, OneOf, to celebrate his massive influence on music history. The most coveted piece of this partnership is none other than an NFT of a demo that the performer of “I Will Always Love You” recorded when she was only 17 years old.

The date of the sale will be announced on December 1 during Miami Art Week. OneOf has revealed, however, that the winning bidder will have access to the full demo of this song, never heard before, as well as a digital video specially created by Diana Sinclair. The American visual artist and curator has notably incorporated rare archival photographs of Whitney Houston.

“Whitney’s talent and presence touches me very much as a young black woman in the arts. In the works of art that I have created [pour cette collection], I wanted to […] to create lively works that simply let Whitney shine while evoking the colorful, playful energy she has had throughout her career, ”Diana Sinclair said in a statement.

The 17-year-old artist created thousands of other NFTs related to the American pop legend for this auction. Several membership levels have been set up by OneOf for the event, each giving access to different digital works paying homage to Whitney Houston.

Legal vagueness

Several big names in the creative industries are also entering the NFT business. Some with more success than others. Quentin Tarantino recently had this bitter experience. The American director has announced that he wants to auction off previously unseen scenes from “Pulp Fiction” in the form of non-fungible tokens. They would contain the first handwritten scripts of the feature film as well as an audio commentary by the filmmaker “revealing secrets about the film and [lui]”.

This initiative was not to the liking of Miramax, owner of the copyright of “Pulp Fiction”. So much so that the production company sued the filmmaker in Los Angeles, claiming that he exceeded his rights as a screenwriter of “Pulp Fiction” and that he violated the contract that binds them. “Miramax will defend all of its rights regarding its catalog, including those relating to NFTs, and will not allow Quentin representatives to [Tarantino] to fool anyone into believing that they have the power to enter into similar agreements in violation of the legal agreements they have signed, “Bart H. Williams, an attorney for Miramax, said in an official document. viewed by The New York Times.

Although they are more popular than ever, digital tokens are not currently subject to any specific regulations and give rise to abuses regarding respect for copyright. A drawing by Jean-Michel Basquiat in the form of an NFT was withdrawn from sale in April after the heirs of the American painter complained that the collective behind the event had no rights to the work. . “The estate of Jean-Michel Basquiat holds the copyright to the mentioned work of art. No license or rights have been transferred to the seller and the NFT has therefore been withdrawn from the sale”, had then David Stark, the licensing agent who looks after the Basquiat archives, told The Art Newspaper.