Actor and producer Seth Green’s NFT collection got stolen, sabotaging his upcoming NFT-based animated show. The actor lost the copyright to several NFTs including main protagonist Bored Ape #8398. After many call-outs and tagging, the current owner of the NFT, DarkWing84 finally contacted Seth. The question is will the dispute settle with mutual interest or end up in the court?
On Saturday, Seth Green announced he will release a Bored Ape-based live-action animated series called White Horse Tavern. According to the trailer, the show is about his NFTs that live with humans in New York City, inspired by the idea of “What if your friendly neighborhood bartender was Bored Ape Yacht Club #8398?” Bored Ape #8398 or Fred Simian is a bartender at the actual old-school bar called White Horse Tavern in the West Village. But what’s the point of asking that question when the producer no longer has copyright ownership to the Bored Ape #8398.
Green bought the Bored Ape last year and has been working day and night to make his project a success. However, on May 17, 2022, the actor posted pictures of four of his NFTs stolen through a scam.
Green explained that he clicked on a phishing link on his minting platform which cleared out NFTs from his connected wallet and automatically went into the marketplace for sale. One of them was the Bored Ape #8398. Since Bored Ape is already a very in-demand NFT collection, a user named DarkWing84 quickly minted it at the price of over $200,000 and became the sole owner of the Bored Ape #8398, leaving Green stunned and empty.
Since these NFTs were already part of his show, losing NFTs meant he has no commercial rights to premier this show in public until he is the only owner of the NFTs. In the above tweet, the producer tagged DarkWing84’s Twitter account, claiming that they robbed NFTs out of his wallet. Green also tagged the user in another tweet asking them to “work it out between us.” Although the user didn’t respond to any of the tweets that Green made, the situation looks more complicated than ever.
Later on May 18, Green replied to a tweet by saying that apparently both of them got scammed; he probably realized that the phishing attack was meant to release his NFT ownership. The producer looks desperate to buy back his NFTs as he went to the lengths of sending a message “contactsethgreenontwitter.eth.” through the ENS domain to DarkWing84.
Despite many calls, the user didn’t respond to Green’s messages which leads to two premises: either the user is ignoring Green or they haven’t received the message yet. DarkWing84 did respond to the tweet by Buzzfeed News, so no one really knows the real truth behind this situation.
Fred Simian or Bored Ape #8398 was revealed in a sneak peek of his animated show last Saturday on VeeCon 2022 after his NFT got stolen. In a discussion with Gary Vee, Green shared his sentiments about the incomplete show due to the loss of copyright. He said, “I bought that ape in July 2021, and have spent the last several months developing and exploiting the IP to make it into the star of this show. Then days before — his name is Fred by the way — days before he’s set to make his world debut, he’s literally kidnapped.”
In a tweet by Buzzfeed News, Green shared that the animated show will be halted for the time being until the NFTs are recovered. After the Buzzfeed report post on Tuesday, Green tweeted the link and said
“Looking forward to precedent setting debates on IP ownership & exploitation, having spent 18 years studying copyright & the industry laws.”
In another tweet, he also added: “[it’ll] go to court, but I’d prefer to meet @DarkWing84 before that. Seems we’d have lots in common.”
After all the fiasco on the internet, DarkWing84 finally DMed to a Buzzfeed reporter saying he would love to “chat to Seth directly” and added “Just woke up and have seen this craziness. Please put him in contact with me.” Days later, Seth tweeted by saying he already connected with the user and revealed no other details about the interaction.
Currently, Bored Ape #8398 is reported for suspicious activity on the OpenSea marketplace, following Green’s complaint.
Although the situation seems to be improving day by day for Seth, this also raises concerns about the transfer of intellectual property rights in the NFT industry. As more and more people try to trade NFTs, the issues of copyright and IPs are becoming more complicated than ever. This can be alarming for the community and require the implementation of rules of regulation to ensure that no one has to face what Seth Green is facing right now.
Other NFTs to be stolen from Seth Green’s wallet include, MutantApeYachtClub #19182, Doodle #7546, and MutantApeYachtClub #9964 (delisted on OpenSea). All of them are reported for suspicious activity.