Black Mirror turns real: Hollywood wants actors’ AI replicas to keep and use forever
Screen Actors Guild – American Federation of Television and Radio Artists (SAG-AFTRA) is going on strike after a “groundbreaking” AI proposal. It would scan actors’ faces, pay them for one day – and then use their AI clones on any project they want, forever, without compensation. Black Mirror’s Joan is Awful is coming to real life way faster than I thought.
The SAG-AFTRA has decided to go on strike after several weeks of unproductive negotiations with the Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers (AMPTP). This union represents approximately 160,000 American workers in the entertainment industry.
Fran Drescher, the President of SAG-AFTRA, along with chief negotiator Duncan Crabtree-Ireland, have announced that the union’s national board has unanimously agreed to go on strike. This decision was made in response to the AMPTP’s alleged refusal to offer a fair deal on key issues that are crucial to protecting the livelihoods of working actors and performers.
“Residual income and high inflation has further reduced our members’ ability to make ends meet,” said Crabtree-Ireland. “To complicate matters further, actors now face an existential threat to their livelihoods with the rise of generative AI technology. We’ve proposed contract changes that address these issues, but the AMPTP has been uninterested in our proposals.”
The shocking AI proposal
After the strike was announced, Crabtree-Ireland revealed the proposal that sounds way too similar to Black Mirror’s first episode of the sixth season. If you watched it, I bet it gave you chills – and I just froze when I realized that something like it is actually happening.
“This ‘groundbreaking’ AI proposal that they gave us yesterday, they proposed that our background performers should be able to be scanned, get one day’s pay, and their companies should own that scan, their image, their likeness and should be able to use it for the rest of eternity on any project they want, with no consent and no compensation.” Crabtree-Ireland revealed, “So if you think that’s a groundbreaking proposal, I suggest you think again.”
Drescher supported Crabtree-Ireland, adding that the studios represented by the AMPTP propose ways that “plead poverty; that they are losing money left and right when giving hundreds of millions of dollars to their CEOs.”
“The gravity of this move is not lost on me or our negotiating committee or our board members who have voted unanimously to proceed with a strike. It’s a very serious thing that impacts thousands, if not millions, of people all across this country and around the world.”
[via The Verge]
Dunja Djudjic is a multi-talented artist based in Novi Sad, Serbia. With 15 years of experience as a photographer, she specializes in capturing the beauty of nature, travel, and fine art. In addition to her photography, Dunja also expresses her creativity through writing, embroidery, and jewelry making.