The Stormtrooper Scandal (BBC Two, Thursday, June 20, 2024)

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The Stormtrooper Scandal, airing on BBC Two on Thursday, June 20, takes us into the intriguing world of NFTs and digital art through the lens of a controversial sale that captivated the art world.

This documentary uncovers the story of a London-based curator and artist, Ben Moore, who, amidst the COVID-19 lockdowns, found himself at the center of a high-profile NFT collection sale. The sale, which took place on November 6, 2021, involved digital artworks based on the iconic stormtrooper helmets from Star Wars. With the recent popularity of NFTs as an investment phenomenon and the inclusion of renowned artists, the sale generated immense interest.

The 1,138 NFTs in the collection sold out within seconds, turning Ben and his colleagues into instant cryptocurrency millionaires. However, this success was short-lived as problems began to surface. Disappointed collectors voiced their concerns about the quality of the NFTs, and rumours spread that some featured artists were unaware their work was included. Despite this, post-sale trading remained healthy, with the organisers profiting from each trade.

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As the story unfolded, aggrieved artists demanded their work be removed, and Lucasfilm, now part of Disney, intervened. The NFTs lost their value, leaving collectors feeling deceived. Ben Moore found himself at the centre of scrutiny as the public face of a controversial sale.

The documentary features key figures, including Ben Moore, as well as artists whose work was inadvertently involved. It also includes the perspectives of collectors who rode the wave of frenzy before being left with nothing.

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The Stormtrooper Scandal explores themes of speculation, greed, and betrayal in the unregulated world of digital art and cryptocurrency. It raises questions about the nature of this new digital frontier, where appearances can be deceptive and the line between a scam and a spiralling get-rich-quick scheme is blurred.

The Stormtrooper Scandal airs on BBC Two on Thursday, June 20, 2024, at 9:00 p.m.

Isabelle aka Izzy Jacobs is the UK previews specialist at memorabletv.com. Isabelle is particularly drawn to crime dramas, but she also has a not so secret love for all things reality TV. In addition to her work at memorabletv.com, Isabelle is also an avid traveler and a devoted foodie.