Steve McQueen, Hollywood legend, honored as ‘King of Cool’ in new NFT collection.

Steve McQueen is making his way into Web3 with a new non-fungible token (NFT) collection that honors his love for motorcycles and his reputation as the “king of cool.”

On July 14, the McQueen Estate, in collaboration with Web3 talent agency Verified Labs, contemporary artist Michael Kalish, Triumph Motorcycles, and Web3 animation studio Immersive Entertainment Laboratories (IEL), will release a collection of 1,000 generative art collectibles with various rarity traits to commemorate the late actor. The project will be sold on the ThetaDrop platform and was inspired by an original portrait of McQueen created by Kalish in 2022, with assistance from McQueen’s grandson, Chase.

Collectors of the “King of Cool Racing Team” NFTs will receive a digital motorcycle shipping crate that they can open to reveal a unique virtual Triumph Bonneville T100 Motorcycle. Revealing the bike will grant them membership into the King of Cool Racing Team and provide access to future token-gated content, events, and games. Each collectible also comes with a 3D Steve McQueen portrait, which can be viewed in greater detail using a virtual reality headset or Sony’s Spatial Reality Display.

McQueen, known for his leading roles in films such as “The Cincinnati Kid,” “The Magnificent Seven,” and “The Towering Inferno,” was also a passionate motorcycle enthusiast. He participated in numerous races and had a collection of Triumph motorcycles and hot rods in his personal garage in Palm Springs, California.

Justin Trevor Winters, co-founder and CEO of Verified Labs, told blockchain that Chase, who runs McQueen Racing with his father Chad, wanted to memorialize the movie star in a new format.

“The truth is, it’s all about legacy,” he said. “We wanted to ensure that we played a part in keeping McQueen alive for future generations. The advancements in AI and technology allow us to do this in a very personal and immersive way.”

In a statement, Kalish expressed that his work has been influenced by Americana, a theme heavily influenced by McQueen throughout his long career in American cinema.

“Having the opportunity to collaborate with the Steve McQueen family has been a perfect alignment of my passions as an artist and what Steve McQueen represented to all of us on the big screen. There is a lot of common ground in our love for cars, motorcycles, family, American iconic objects, and moments,” said Kalish.

McQueen joins a list of celebrities being honored posthumously on the blockchain. In June 2022, Biggie Smalls’ estate partnered with NFT marketplace OneOf to release a series of profile picture (PFP) NFTs that grant holders voting rights over the distribution of a previously unlicensed Notorious B.I.G. freestyle. And in October, David Bowie’s estate released a collection of exclusive digital art collectibles through OpenSea.

Edited by Stephen Alpher.

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