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TMCNet:  Aptos Labs is Bringing Blockchain to the Movies with the Launch of: FREE RENFIELD In partnership with Universal Pictures' new horror comedy

[March 24, 2023]

Aptos Labs is Bringing Blockchain to the Movies with the Launch of: FREE RENFIELD In partnership with Universal Pictures' new horror comedy

For Universal Pictures' Renfield, in theaters April 14,
Aptos is teaming up with Forward Studio and Signal and Cipher
to change the way fans experience the movie

LOS ANGELES, March 24, 2023 /PRNewswire/ -- Aptos Labs, Forward Studio and Signal and Cipher, today jointly announced, in partnership with Universal Pictures, a fan-fueled twist to the launch of Universal's new horror comedy, Renfield (in theaters April 14), starring Oscar winner Nicolas Cage as Dracula and Emmy-nominee Nicholas Hoult as Renfield, his long-suffering servant.

Promoted by partner Fandango, advertised on Bloody Disgusting, across theatrical digital pre-shows and on Universal Pictures' media channels, FREE RENFIELD is free to play, accessible on mobile and desktop devices and runs from March 24th to April 20th.

Brought to life by the Aptos blockchain, FREE RENFIELD affords fans the opportunity to compete for a chance to be entered to win a variety of Dracula inspired prizes, including the Renfield digital art collection; auto-generated, individualized prizes that are minted and become a tradable collectible.

The Renfield digital art collection is a series of four designs following the story of Renfield, Dracula's familiar on his quest to free himself from the clutches of the Prince of Darkness. This series features special poster designs and custom comic art based on key scenes from the Universal Pictures film Renfield. Each piece is tied to different levels of physical and digital prizes one can win by playing the Renfield Sweepstakes.

In the film, Renfield eats bugs to temporarily give himself superhuman powers, which served as the inspiration for Forward Studio creating FREE RENFIELD, an interactive web-based game that allows users to search for bugs, which are starring key characters in the film, for a chance to win Dracula inspired prizes.  Players simply look at movie scenes for the hidden bugs, then select the right scene for a chance to win and be entered to win a prize lot worthy of a dark lord.

FREE RENFIELD meets fans where they already are, and allows users to seamlessly integrate web2 and web3 technologies into their everyday lives. Users will be challenged to swipe through a series of stylized photos to find the bugs and win both digital and physical collectibles.

Enhancing Fan Engagement With Blockchain
FREE RENFIELD is an interactive web-based game that allows users to enter a sweepstakes for a chance to win prizes.

How to Participate:

  • Through the Aptos blockchain, users are challenged to swipe through a series of stylized photos to find the bugs, featured as a key element in the film, for a chance to win auto-generated, individualized prizes that are minted and will become a tradable collectible.

Prizes Available for Eligible Participants:
Prizes awarded to sweepstakes winners will get as close as they can to the story and characters by getting a chance to win:

  • Custom jewelry inspired by Dracula's adornments, digital collectible art inspired by the film as well as custom blood-red velvet suits, 24 carat gold bug jewelry, historical Dracula crest rings, blood-red rubies, vintage Dracula film posters and a rare vintage 1967 Dracula horror-themed pinball machine. 

When it comes to the digital collectibles, in particular, a key feature will be different unique designs—with four different types of digital collectibles in play:

  • Something for all: Everyone who plays regardless of winning will get The "Renfield Relic" is the movie poster that will be given to anyone who plays the game, regardless of if they have won or not. Users authenticate to play, and unlock the Relic. Winners drawn at random during the sweepstakes have a chance to win a rare, semi-rare, or Legendary digital art collectible.
  • The Rare: HE IS MY SERVANT-  Comic book scene from the film (8,000 to be won)
  • The Ultra-Rare: COLLECTIBLE RENFIELD POSTER- Animated movie poster (1,000 to be won)
  • The Legendary: I AM DRACULA-  Limited edition comic book scene from the film (only 16 will be won)

Bringing Fans Together Through Unique Partnerships & Experiences
"We know audiences just want to be connected. They want story, and fun, and no barriers to connecting with their fandom," said Greg Reed, Vice President of Technology Partnerships, Universal Pictures. "Our job is to leverage high-performing, scalable networks, like Aptos, that deliver the most unique, engaging, and safe experiences for fans. Our main goal: to bring people closer to the characters and stories they love."

Bringing the Renfield experience to the broadest group of entertainment fans was realized through a collaboration with Fandango, the ultimate digital network for all things movies that reaches more than 50M unique visitors per month. In addition to being the nation's top online movie ticketer, Fandango helps extend the fandom of movies to millions of moviegoers through its robust social platforms and direct-to-consumer marketing efforts. 

Leaning into Story to Bridge Web2 and Web3 for Fans
User experience has been an inherent blocker to mainstream adoption of web3. The FREE RENFIELD Challenge will utilize the powerful technology behind the Aptos blockchain to deliver a seamless user experience and compelling interactive fan experience.

Forward, the agency that conceived and built the experience shapes all its work based on story.

"With such a rich story that goes back to the 1800s being told in such a contemporary way, it was such fun territory to highlight that, regardless of what cool tech is out there, it's still just us humans trying to relate and connect with each other," said Rachel Noonan, Chief Strategy Officer at Forward.

"Without new blockchain technology like Aptos coming into the market to build on the current infrastructure, we wouldn't be able to push forward with experiences like this that involve fans directly and creatively," added Sam Schoonover, Founder of Forward.

Experiences like the FREE RENFIELD Challenge built on Aptos are powered by Move, a programming language developed by former Big Tech engineers that uses a more carbon-efficient proof-of-stake consensus method that taps into a network of validators. The result is an immersive fan experience accessible on a global scale and with minimal environmental impact.

"It's always easy to come up with the idea, but building it with new technology is a different beast. At Signal and Cipher, we've seen the power of emerging technologies like virtual production, and the convergence of web2 and web3. We are proud to deliver an immersive fan experience powered by invisible technology and completely integrated into the plot of Renfield," said Ian Beacraft, Founder, Signal and Cipher.

"When I worked at the movie theater in high school, I used to daydream that I was the star in the latest movies as I swept popcorn off the floor. Now I have the unique opportunity to actually bring this dream to life with the FREE RENFIELD Challenge, a partnership of our high-performing blockchain technology and one of the world's top studios. Together, we create a world where fans can feel like films are made just for them, which is such a cool addition to the legacy of storytelling and culture."

To complete the FREE RENFIELD Challenge, click here:
For FREE RENFIELD challenge press assets, email: [email protected]

Evil doesn't span eternity without a little help. 

In this modern monster tale of Dracula's loyal servant, Emmy nominee Nicholas Hoult (Mad Max: Fury RoadX-Men franchise) stars as Renfield, the tortured aide to history's most narcissistic boss, Dracula (Oscar® winner Nicolas Cage). Renfield is forced to procure his master's prey and do his every bidding, no matter how debased. But now, after centuries of servitude, Renfield is ready to see if there's a life outside the shadow of The Prince of Darkness.  If only he can figure out how to end his codependency. 

Renfield is directed by Emmy winner Chris McKay (The Tomorrow War, The LEGO Batman Movie) from a screen story by The Walking Dead and Invincible creator Robert Kirkman and a screenplay by Ryan Ridley (Ghosted series, Rick & Morty series). 

The film also stars Golden Globe winner Awkwafina (The Farewell, Marvel's Shang-Chi and the Legend of Ten Rings), Emmy winner and Oscar® nominee Shohreh Aghdashloo (House of Saddam, House of Sand and Fog), Ben Schwartz (SonicThe Afterparty), Adrian Martinez (The Secret Life of Walter MittyFocus) and Brandon Scott Jones (Ghosts, The Other Two).

Renfield is a Skybound/Giant Wildcat production, produced by Chris McKay, Samantha Nisenboim (co-producer, The Tomorrow War), Bryan Furst (Daybreakers), Sean Furst (Daybreakers), Robert Kirkman and David Alpert p.g.a. (The Walking Dead). The executive producer is Todd Lewis (unit production manager, Jason Bourne).

Aptos is a next-generation Layer 1 blockchain.  Aptos' breakthrough technology and programming language, Move, are designed to evolve, improve performance and strengthen user safeguards. Please visit for more information on the Aptos blockchain.

Aptos Labs, co-founded by Mo Shaikh and Avery Ching, is dedicated to creating better network tooling and seamless usability to bring the benefits of decentralization to the masses. Having now raised over $400M, Aptos Labs is backed by top-flight investors, including a16z, Jump Crypto, Binance Labs, Dragonfly, PayPal Ventures and Coinbase Ventures.

Forward Studio uses human centric design, emerging technology, and entertainment to bring unique and innovative consumer experiences to life. Working with clients across sectors, they focus on extending IP, brand stories, and fan worlds by identifying key unmet needs of consumers, market fit, and untapped spaces to create and build value for brands and audiences.

We build next generation experiences with the technology of tomorrow. A strategic foresight consultancy and production studio, Signal and Cipher is dedicated to decoding the future for the world's most innovative companies. We guide our clients through the complex landscape of new and emerging technologies including AI, virtual production, extended reality, digital twins, and more. We help them prioritize, implement, operationalize, and commercialize the most advanced technologies in the world to create unparalleled experiences for their customers.

Universal Pictures is a division of Universal Studios ( Universal Studios is part of NBCUniversal. NBCUniversal is one of the world's leading media and entertainment companies in the development, production and marketing of entertainment, news and information to a global audience.  NBCUniversal owns and operates a valuable portfolio of news and entertainment networks, a premier motion picture company, significant television production operations, a leading television stations group and world-renowned theme parks.  NBCUniversal is a subsidiary of Comcast Corporation.

Fandango is the ultimate digital network for all things movies and TV, serving more than 50 million unique visitors per month, according to comScore, with best-in-class movie and TV information, movie ticketing to 31,000 U.S. screens, trailers and original video, and home entertainment.? Its portfolio features leading online ticketers Fandango,? Flixster; world-renowned movie review site Rotten Tomatoes; and Rotten Tomatoes Network on YouTube, the #1 movie trailers and content channel. Fandango's movie discovery and ticketing innovations can also be found on mobile, social, AI and voice platforms.?

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SOURCE Aptos Labs

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