What if technology enabled you to share a screen with Hugh Jackman? And no, we are not talking about a look-alike or virtual replica. Warner Bros.' upcoming movie Reminiscence starring Jackman has incorporated deepfake technology to turn a fan's photograph into a short video sequence with Jackman. Along with digital studio Oblio, the American film production company has partnered with Israeli-based synthetic media startup D-ID to use its'Live Portrait' product and create personalised experiences for movie fans. For the Reminiscence project, Warner Bros. has created an official website where users can enter their first names and upload a picture of themselves -- from the past or current.
Genealogy website MyHeritage has unveiled a bizarre new online tool that can animate old photos of deceased family members. The free deepfake technology, called Deep Nostalgia, takes any photo and animates the subject's face – with strangely realistic and unsettling results. Examples provided by MyHeritage show historical figures, including Queen Victoria, Mark Twain and Florence Nightingale, come to life. MyHeritage says the tech gives history'a fresh new perspective' by producing a depiction of how a person'could have moved and looked if captured on video'. It's been developed by researchers at Israel-based firm D-ID, which specialises in video reenactment using deep learning.
Yes, these are amazing places. I'm sure you've used one at least once. Yet, while a few types of media are clearly edited, different changes might be harder to spot. You may have heard the term "deepfake videos" recently. It originally came to fruition in 2017 to depict videos and pictures that incorporate deep learning algorithms to create videos and images that look real.
When several life-like Tom Cruise deepfakes went viral on TikTok, many saw the future of truth through a glass, darkly -- out of concern for a world where acquiring deepfakes of major celebrities or political figures would become a "one-click" feature of daily life. Like it or not, we live in a world where anyone can interact with deepfake technology. But curating high-end specialized AI drivers -- whether for mischief or raising awareness -- is harder than it looks. The creator of the video -- a Belgium VFX specialist named Chris Ume -- thinks this is unlikely, emphasizing the impractically long timespans and substantial effort required to build every deepfake, in addition to finding an ace Tom Cruise impersonator (Miles Fisher). "You can't do it by just pressing a button," said Ume in a report from The Verge.
As coverage of deepfake technology becomes more prevalent, it's reasonable to wonder how these videos even work. Advancements in motion capturing and facial recognition over the past decade have been staggering – and terrifying. What used to be limited to only the most well-funded computer scientists and movie studios is now a tool in the hands of comedy outlets and state-run media. By definition, deepfakes are videos in which a person's face and/or voice are replaced with someone else's by an AI. The underlying technology and machine learning processes rose to popularity in the early '90s, evolving from a field of academic research.