Film, Animation and The Rise of AI


The adoption of new technologies is making the world change faster than ever. Although there has been a similar renaissance to the Industrial Revolution in recent years, some remain skeptical about this massive shift. Others see it a potential opportunity to build businesses in creative and technical sectors.

As is the case for any major change, some people will try to ignore that it is happening and put their heads in sand. I am part of the camp that accepts it is a natural evolution, a reward for innovation, and advancements over the past 70 year,” said Bardya. She is an entrepreneur as well as a film producer, actor, and director.

What is AI?

Artificial intelligence (or AI), is the combination of computer science with strong datasets to help solve problems. It has grown from slow, earlier capabilities. According to IBM , it now “includes all sub-fields such as machine learning or deep learning, which are often mentioned with artificial intelligence,”. These sub-fields contain AI algorithms that are capable of making classifications and predictions based solely on input data.

How is AI changing the film industry

AI is expected make more mundane tasks obsolete. AI is expected simplify production and editing. This will facilitate a smoother process from beginning to finish.

No longer do animators have to draw every frame manually. The industry is evolving and will now accept programming skills. Now animators can learn computer programming technology, which makes it easier for artists to create art. This type of collaboration between technology & creativity will be the way forward. People who have created in an analog way will also have the chance to expand their skill sets and become more competitive in their chosen field, especially with film.

How much will AI help reduce production costs?

Bardya Zyaian: “As someone involved directly in film production, particularly as someone who finances films, I study each aspect of filmproduction and the advancements that are available to streamline processes, cut down costs and improve the quality of a movie production.” “AI/machine-learning can be a great help, there’s no doubt about it.”

Making movies is not a safe business. Only 20% of films actually make their budget back. Even Hollywood films with large marketing and production budgets can only be profitable for less than 50%. The world is full of variables and many challenges, so “the case for selecting projects via an AI fed with big-data is compelling, and start ups are stepping in to the breach,” according a recent article in Tech Native.

Cinelytic, an LA-based company, was mentioned in the article. They aim to help determine the success of a production through analysis of specific criteria such as similar films and talent. Scriptbook is a Belgian company that plans to predict film success from an earlier stage. They will have their AI read the script, and then predict its success. Scriptbook is one of many companies working to develop AIs capable of creating stories.

According to the article: “OpenAI’s GPT-2 large, unsupervised language system model made headlines in February. Its developers declared that the stories it could write were so good that it was dangerous to release.”

Why should AI concern film-lovers?

While the business side is interested in cost-savings, AI offers an additional benefit for filmmakers. AI handles simple tasks so they Bardya Ziaian can focus on the filmmaking process.

“It is easy to imagine that technology like robots and algorithms would make the film business go the way of the factory worker as well as the customer representative. It is clear that artistic filmmaking seems to be in its last days. The opposite is true for the film industry. According to Futurism, artificial intelligence seems have enhanced Hollywood’s creativity and not squelched.”

Many have seen AI and machine-learning with some trepidation and are curious as to their impact on human workers. But many are beginning to see the benefits. People are free to pursue more creative pursuits and realize their full potential. Some people may see doors closing. Others are seeing new technologies opening up doors.

This is life. Acceptance is often seen as brazen, or renegade, when you are first entering any significant social changes. I do see the possibility to create extraordinary works at a fraction or less cost, and to be more involved in the development of a narrative. Ziaian explained that storytelling is all about moving people. To laugh, to cry, to share much-needed levity, learn, or awaken the need for change.

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