Movie theater. A Putin biopic made using artificial intelligence

Movie theater. A Putin biopic made using artificial intelligence
Movie theater. A Putin biopic made using artificial intelligence

A biopic on Vladimir Putin? As the real thing was not available, Patryk Vega made it appear as a deepfake using artificial intelligence (AI) in a film presented at the Cannes Film Market.

Patryk Vega initially wanted to create his character using real-life shots of the Russian leader, but the quality wasn’t good enough for the big screen. “AI needs to be fed. You need 20,000 high-resolution images for it to work,” he explains.

Stunning realism

Instead, he developed new technology that allows a real-life actor with the same stature as Putin to obtain his face using AI. “This is the first film to use this technology,” he claims. The effect is astonishing. In the film, of which AFP was able to see an extract, we see Putin as we know him in his public appearances, but also incontinent or playing the piano.

“I wanted to slip into Putin’s head,” explains the filmmaker, who sees his film as a “how-to” for the Russian president. The result is a mix of political thriller and psychological portrait spanning 60 years. And in the end, Putin dies. “It should have been a happy ending,” smiles Patryk Vega, on the sidelines of the Cannes Film Festival.

“I called Putin and asked him if he wanted to participate. I was joking,” says, hilariously, the Polish director, until now the author of gangster films. “Putin is not a crazy guy. But with him, everything revolves around his ego,” says the man who had the idea for the film shortly after the start of the war in Ukraine in February 2022. Asked about possible fears linked to the release of the film, he laughs and replies: “No, Putin should be afraid of me. »

Sold in 50 countries

According to the distributor’s information, “Putin” has already been sold in more than 50 countries. In the future, Vega wants to offer the AI ​​he developed to other producers, in particular to generate scenes with extras. “They can send me an empty street and I create a crowd for them,” he explains. “As the characters are entirely artificial, there is no problem with image rights, and it is much cheaper than filming with many extras.”

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