Hollywood, CA – September 12, 2023
Well-known filmmaker Tim Burton, celebrated for his unique and gothic artistic style, has voiced his concerns over the growing influence of Artificial Intelligence (AI) in the world of animation. Burton’s comments came during an interview with The Independent, in which he addressed the recent Buzzfeed article that employed AI to reimagine beloved Disney characters in his distinct directorial style.
The article, which went viral earlier this summer, highlighted Disney characters like Elsa from “Frozen” and Princess Aurora from “Sleeping Beauty” reimagined as if they were the stars of Burton’s stop-motion masterpiece, “Corpse Bride.” While the internet was captivated by these AI-generated interpretations, Burton’s reaction was far from amused.
In the interview, Burton expressed his visceral reaction to the AI recreations: “They had AI do my versions of Disney characters. I can’t describe the feeling it gives you. It reminded me of when other cultures say, ‘Don’t take my picture because it is taking away your soul.'”
The iconic director delved further into his discomfort, stating, “What it does is it sucks something from you. It takes something from your soul or psyche; that is very disturbing, especially if it has to do with you. It’s like a robot taking your humanity, your soul.”
This isn’t the first instance of AI blending with renowned auteurs’ styles, as it has become a trend on social media. AI-generated videos imagining famous franchises like “Star Wars” or “The Lord of the Rings” directed by filmmakers like Wes Anderson have also gone viral in recent times. When asked about these AI adaptations, Anderson himself chose to distance himself, stating, “If somebody sends me something like that, I’ll immediately erase it and say, ‘Please, sorry, do not send me things of people doing me.'”
Burton’s latest interview coincides with his upcoming art exhibition at the Museo Nazionale del Cinema in Turin and the pause in production for his highly anticipated film, “Beetlejuice 2,” due to ongoing strikes involving the “Writers Guild of America (WGA) and the Screen Actors Guild-American Federation of Television and Radio Artists (SAG-AFTRA).”
As Hollywood grapples with the evolving role of AI in the entertainment industry, debates and negotiations continue, particularly concerning job security for writers and actors in the age of automation.
For more updates on Tim Burton and the impact of AI in Hollywood, stay tuned.