AI Actors are Coming

Get ready for Hollywood's new virtual "it" crowd - glossy digital celebrities created completely by AI. Soon you may not be able to tell who's real or fake on the red carpet!

AI generated synthetic actors and virtual humans are rapidly advancing and becoming widespread, posing challenges for distinguishing what's real vs fake and prompting calls for better rights management and standards. Soon it may be impossible to tell a real human from an AI-created one.


  • Tools to easily create realistic synthetic actors are now accessible and affordable to anyone. This has led to unauthorized usage of celebrity likenesses to sell products.
  • Top actors like Tom Hanks and Robin Wright will star in a film using AI to de-age them in real time, eliminating special effects work. Paris Hilton, James Earl Jones and others are also exploring uses.
  • Startups like HyperReal and Metaphysic are working with celebrities to create "digital doubles" - ultra-realistic virtual versions of themselves - that can be licensed out and generate royalties.
  • New virtual celebrities like the K-pop group Mave are being created entirely artificially using AI and performing successfully. Virtual shopping assistants in China are selling billions in goods.
  • Standards are needed to distinguish real vs synthetic identities and track/compensate usage rights properly. Hand ID and other startups are working on persistent digital IDs and rights management platforms.
  • Basic synthetic video tools from companies like D-ID, Synthesia and Hour One are being used widely for corporate communications, training, etc. Quality is not perfect but improves rapidly.
  • We are moving quickly from unrealistic synthetic humans to ones nearly indistinguishable from reality. Their usage will become mainstream, presenting opportunities and challenges.




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