Generative artificial intelligence (AI) has been taking the world by storm since ChatGPT was launched a year ago. This popularity is set to continue and GlobalData expects that the global generative AI market will grow at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 80% between 2022 and 2027. During his speech at the AI Creative Summit in November, Cyrus Mewawalla, the Head of Thematic Intelligence at GlobalData, noted that generative AI has the highest adoption rate of any tech cycle seen.

An industry that is significantly being disrupted by generative AI is the film industry. In November, AI use in filmmaking made the headlines again as Jeffrey Katzenberg, the co-founder of DreamWorks, argued that AI will cut a whopping 90% of the costs of animated films. Naturally, this astounding prediction brought out questions regarding AI use in the film industry.

Generative AI in filmmaking

According to GlobalData, today, generative AI can generate films with low production values. It can also be used for very basic content and script writing. However, humans still need to verify any content generated for accuracy. It can help studios prepare promotional posters or movie trailers at post-production. However, for now, considering its limitations, it looks like it is best to position AI only as a supporting mechanism in the film industry.

The speed of development promises that AI’s impact on filmmaking will grow. In the next one to six years, generative AI will be able to write better, more advanced, and more accurate scripts—and AI will even be able to fact-check these. AI will also be able to generate complete segments of movies without the need for special effects or human touches. However, even at this stage, generative AI’s job will still be limited to collaboration and enhancing productivity.

AI in film in 2030 and beyond

However, this will change as the technology improves, and GlobalData predicts that in ten to 30 years, generative AI’s employment impact will be more crucial. It will even include specific team and role replacements.

According to GlobalData, in 2030 and beyond, AI will be capable of taking over most elements of film production. Theoretically, there will be no need for real actors and AI will be able to fully automate end-to-end content generation. It will also allow for on-the-fly translation of multilingual content, allowing movies to expand into foreign markets easier, quicker, and cheaper.

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By GlobalData

Ultimately, we will reach a place in which generative AI will be able to create a whole movie with just a press of a button, without the need for a cast, crew, or script. However, questions will arise around whether completely AI-made movies—which do not technically include fan-favourite actors—will have the same attraction to audiences.

Hollywood’s AI controversy

Generative AI will disrupt the entire media value chain. But with the increasing use of AI in filmmaking comes controversy and uncertainties.

Calls for regulation are already being raised across sectors to limit AI’s impact on jobs. Recent strikes in Hollywood were due in large part to writers’ and actors’ concerns regarding AI’s impact on their jobs. The strikes ended recently, with both writers and actors reaching tentative deals with studios.

Another issue surrounding generative AI in filmmaking is regarding intellectual property (IP) and ownership as its generation capabilities allow copyrighted characters like Batman or Spider-Man to be easily created and used in other productions—even amateur videos. Alongside this, there are also uncertainties regarding whether AI-generated content can be copyrighted.

Filmmakers must keep these issues in mind as they lay out their AI strategies.