The Oscars’ seemingly planned big tribute ending for the late Chadwick Boseman may have gotten spoiled, but there were plenty of reminders of the actor’s life and legacy at the Academy Awards on Sunday. Not all of them thrilled viewers, though, especially after Boseman failed to snag a posthumous Best Actor award for Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom.
This year’s festivities were different in a number of ways, starting with all the coronavirus pandemic safety requirements and a visually different broadcast. But the very order of operations was upset this time around, with the Best Actor award coming last rather than Best Picture, as is normally the case. What was meant to be a grand finale for Boseman landed with a thud when he didn’t win and Anthony Hopkins, who did, wasn’t even around to snag the trophy.
All of that drama irked some folks to say the least, and it also made another tribute to Boseman ring that much more hollow. Digital artist Andre Oshea was commissioned to create the NFT of Boseman, which was included as part of Oscars swag bags on Sunday.
The buy now price for this is 1.2M
I want to stress the importance of that because this is a price point that a black artist in the NFT hasn’t been able to break yet.
We have the opportunity to create REAL history with this piece.
— ●●● (@andreoshea) April 24, 2021
A version was also set up for auction on Rarible, with the goal of donating half of the proceeds to The Colon Cancer Foundation. But despite the good cause, some weren’t thrilled by the perception of it all in the aftermath of the ceremony.
Creating a Chadwick Boseman NFT and not even giving him an posthumous Oscar is the best example of everything wrong today. https://t.co/HewV7sH9io
— Dylan Tucson (@DylanTucson) April 26, 2021
Sooooooo lemme get this straight:
They rushed the 'in memoriam' section to get to Chadwick's face last
Changed the order of the winners to tease Chadwick winning last
and then at the end of the night everyone gets an NFT of Chadwick's head?
This all feels wrong.#Oscars
— Rendy Jones (@Rendy_Jones) April 26, 2021
Idk what’s worse the fact that it’s an Nft, the fact that Chadwick Boseman’s death is being commodified, or that this is in every Oscar nominees’ gift bags https://t.co/LVc5Nk04mE
— Jenn wants to be a tv writer ✨ (@jenn0wow) April 25, 2021
Part of this is simply NFT exhaustion, as countless artists, companies and intellectual property holders have tried to cash in on the NFT explosion of the last few months. But it’s also just an uncomfortable aftermath of a moment that didn’t work out perfectly. Raising money for a charity trying to help those afflicted by a cancer that took Boseman’s life is, indeed, a good thing. But the idea of a Boseman NFT, especially in the context of his more tangible snub on Sunday, didn’t sit well with a number of people online.