IS AI GOING TO REPLACE ACTORS?

So I came across this video from America's Got Talent where a contestant with the aid of real-time face tracking and virtual technology, manages to have an almost realistic Elvis that is essentially mimicking the contestants facial expressions and lips as he sang a rendition of "Hound Dog" and quite ironically "You're the devil in disguise".



Now I said an "Almost realistic" Elvis as he later did the actual hosts of the tv show and they too looked too good to be distinguished from reality , and that had me me thinking about how this technology is going to impact the film industry.


Sure deep-fake technology has been around for several years now, after all who can forget this mind-blowing early demonstration of it's capabilities?

I'm pretty sure though that when it comes to politicians and people that have high government positions there will be in one way or another protected so that this technology isn't used maliciously and accidentally create a war!

But here's the thing, AI has progressed further than that, and can now synthesize "original" faces, add to that the deep-fake technology that is nearly "perfect" and we are looking at perhaps a way that in future will enable films with AI created actors and we would be non the wiser that this person doesn't really exist. There would be no way to see the difference since by then even the most nuanced facial expressions and skin texture will have been mastered by AI.


You see, one of the "holy grails" of CGI and VFX is the human face and skin as far making it look realistic enough to fool anyone, and there's a good reason for that....we are genetically programmed to distinguish a real human face and skin from a fake one (which begs the question what caused us to develop this evolutionary trait, but that's a whole different topic). So replicating human faces and skin through VFX has always been an arduous process. Even though In films for many years most buildings, planes cars, sets and a lot of other elements you saw in the frame where probably CGI and you would never have known!

But now technology has reached the point where all these obstacles have been overcome. Imagine watching a "real" film where all the actors are synthesized, where they become legitimate movie stars and have a following! That is literally a producer's wet dream! Having complete control over the talent....and for free! In fact tie that in with a 360° virtual led set first implemented on the show Mandalorian and what has been happening in the music industry there is more than enough incentive both for practical and financial reasons why some big Hollywood studio will soon attempt to create their first non-existent world famous Hollywood actor...it's only a matter of time!


And If anyone remembers, all this was literally the plot for the movie "S1mone" made 20 years ago, starring Al Pacino.




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