OpenAI Wooing Hollywood Studios, Talent Agencies to Encourage Filmmakers to Use AI

Artificial intelligence technology is coming to Hollywood a lot faster than many could have anticipated. This week, OpenAI is reportedly making the rounds to studios and talent agencies in a bid to promote Sora, the text-to-video generative AI application that its developers hope will revolutionize the way Hollywood makes movies and TV shows.

OpenAI is pitching Sora to Hollywood in advance of the application’s release later this year, according to a Bloomberg report. Sora will theoretically enable filmmakers to generate entire scenes — featuring “actors,” virtual sets, and even camera-like tracking shots — simply by typing in a text description of what they want.

That spells bad news for blue-collar Hollywood, which is responsible for the physical side of TV and movie production. Crews are already being slammed by the economic downturn in the entertainment industry as studios reduce the number of TV shows they are churning out.

In a sign of how serious things are getting, OpenAI CEO Sam Altman reportedly attended parties in Los Angeles during Oscars weekend.

When asked by Bloomberg to elaborate on OpenAI’s ambitions in Hollywood, a spokesperson offered a rather vague response.

“OpenAI has a deliberate strategy of working in collaboration with industry through a process of iterative deployment – rolling out AI advances in phases – in order to ensure safe implementation and to give people an idea of what’s on the horizon. We look forward to an ongoing dialogue with artists and creatives.”

Sora has already impressed Tyler Perry, who cancelled plans to construct an $800 million studio expansion in Atlanta, Georgia, after seeing the capabilities of the application.

“Being told that it can do all of these things is one thing, but actually seeing the capabilities, it was mind-blowing,” he said.

“I no longer would have to travel to locations. If I wanted to be in the snow in Colorado, it’s text,” he continued. “If I wanted to write a scene on the moon, it’s text, and this AI can generate it like nothing.”

The inevitable coming of Sora to Hollywood is bound to make workers of all stripes nervous, especially during delicate union negotiations that are currently underway.

Both IATSE and the Teamsters, which represent the bulk of crew members as well as post-production workers, have stated that AI is among the key issues they will negotiate in their talks with the studios.

Sora could lead to more unemployment at a time when blue-collar crew members are struggling to find work as studios are slashing their budgets and cutting back on TV and movie production.

Follow David Ng on Twitter @HeyItsDavidNg. Have a tip? Contact me at [email protected]


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