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Sidwell Friends School's Student Newspaper Since 1974


Sidwell Friends School's Student Newspaper Since 1974


Sidwell Friends School's Student Newspaper Since 1974


OpenAI’s Sora Raises Questions About Future of Film Industry

Sora can produce elaborate videos with detailed graphics and varying motion. Photo: Wikimedia Commons.

As new innovations are integrated in the digital world, increasingly advanced applications have been developed to help improve online experiences, such as ChatGPT, Craiyon and DeepAI. However, the company that developed ChatGPT, an artificial intelligence research organization called OpenAI, recently released a new program called Sora that has experts considering the impact of Artificial Intelligence on the film industry.

Sora has quickly skyrocketed in popularity and notoriety due to its realistic auto-generated content. According to OpenAI, Sora can produce elaborate videos with detailed graphics and different types of motion, effectively implementing user prompts in the physical world. 

Unlike prior attempts at such generative AI, which resulted in “blurry, choppy, distorted and disturbing… four-second videos” according to The Washington Post, Sora “creates videos that look as if they were lifted from a Hollywood movie.”

Furthermore, Sora’s accessibility is unprecedented: anyone can create these seemingly flawless videos by simply typing in a description of what they want, and it will be generated and displayed on their screen. The company’s AI software has become so accurate that it is almost impossible to decipher fiction from reality. Many are excited about the possibilities this technology offers for the film industry, particularly in Hollywood.

“There’s definitely going to be a new class of entertainment experiences,” said Open AI research scientist Bill Peebles in an interview with the Washington Post. Peebles predicts a future in which “the line between video game and movie might be more blurred.” 

In an interview with NBC News, film concept artist and illustrator Reid Southern said, “A lot of people are saying Hollywood’s over, Hollywood’s done… I don’t really think that’s the case for a lot of reasons.”

Southern explained that the AI-generated videos are “a little too sloppy with too many issues, especially with temporal consistency and artifacts like extra limbs.”

However, others believe that the introduction of OpenAI will destroy job opportunities for those looking to join the entertainment industry. According to NBC News, even before Sora’s release, entertainment industry workers raised concerns about generative AI.

A lot of people are saying Hollywood’s over, Hollywood’s done… I don’t really think that’s the case for a lot of reasons.

— Reid Southern

Aubry Mintz, interim executive director of the International Animated Film Association’s Hollywood branch, stated in an interview with NBC that “if Sora makes roles in reference animation, concept art and storyboarding redundant, these industry professionals may find themselves out of a job.” 

In the same article, actor and filmmaker Tyler Perry commented, “It’s become clear that we live in a culture of good enough, in a lot of ways, and so if there’s a dollar to be shaved off, people and companies are going to jump on it.”

While the new technology is a huge step forward in the AI industry, OpenAI has admitted there are glitches present in the system that cause the content and quality of the film to be unpredictable and sometimes poor. One AI-generated video depicted a group of wolf cubs with extra legs protruding from abnormal places. This phenomenon occurs because OpenAI uses stock images across the web to create their videos, which brings up another issue of using uncredited content. OpenAI is already being sued by The New York Times for sourcing from across the internet without acknowledgement being given to the original author.

There are also significant issues in the cyberworld regarding crimes like identity theft, with one example being an AI-generated audio clip of President Biden advising people not to vote. Many are concerned that AI could spread misinformation about political matters and lead to distrust in the digital community. 

According to The Washington Post, “disinformation researchers are unnerved by the prospect” of generative AI advancements because of how AI is already affecting the spread of disinformation even in its early stages. Already, modern technology has caused significant disinformation problems, and generative AI adds another layer to that. 

Identity theft is also an issue in regard to celebrities, some of whom have already struggled with AI-generated non-consensual images. One example was the deepfake controversy around artist Taylor Swift, in which explicit images of Swift’s body were spread on social media, violating the singer’s privacy and body autonomy.

Although there are dangers associated with up-and-coming digital platforms such as OpenAI, many believe that this new technology has the potential to improve lives as well. AI can create a digital floor-plan for a house, help create better-quality films and assist in the medical field, where such technology could be lifesaving.

The jump to this level of artificial intelligence was abrupt and shocking to many. “[The technology] was 18 months ahead of where I thought we were. I was totally mind-blown,” said Fable Studios AI producer Edward Saatchi in an interview with IndieWire.

Saatchi emphasized Sora’s potential to go beyond short clips. “We were in a rut as a community,” he stated. “This opens up the ability to tell much more complex stories.”

Though not yet released to the public, OpenAI’s Sora has already sparked many discussions and controversies. People in and out of the film community are waiting to see what happens when Sora is opened up to public use.

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