Tim Burton Expresses Concerns Over AI Replicating His Distinct Style: “A Dehumanizing Impact”
The iconic director Tim Burton, celebrated for his unique cinematic style seen in classics like “The Nightmare Before Christmas,” “Edward Scissorhands,” “Corpse Bride,” and Netflix’s “Wednesday,” recently grappled with the unsettling experience of witnessing artificial intelligence mimic his artistic aesthetic.
In an intriguing turn of events, Buzzfeed utilized an AI generator in July to recreate well-known Disney characters, including Elsa from “Frozen,” Ariel from “The Little Mermaid,” and Aurora from “Sleeping Beauty,” all imbued with Burton’s unmistakable gothic touch.
Burton shared his perspective in an interview with The Independent, stating, “They had AI replicate my versions of Disney characters! Describing the sensation it evokes is challenging. It brought to mind the sentiment expressed in other cultures, ‘Don’t photograph me, for it steals a part of your soul.'”
While Burton acknowledged that some of the AI-generated artworks were “remarkably well-crafted,” he confessed that these recreations were emotionally taxing from a creative standpoint.
“What it does is it drains something from you. It saps something from your soul or psyche, which is profoundly disquieting, especially when it pertains to your own creative work,” Burton lamented. “It’s akin to a machine extracting your humanity, your essence.”
Burton is not alone in Hollywood in expressing concerns about the encroachment of AI into the entertainment industry.
During a speech at the SAG-AFTRA “Rock the City For a Fair Contract” rally in Times Square, New York, in July, actor Bryan Cranston criticized the use of artificial intelligence in film and television.
Directly addressing Disney CEO Bob Iger, who had previously labeled actors’ strike actions as “disturbing,” Cranston alluded to AI when he said, “I understand, sir, that you view things from a different perspective. We don’t expect you to fully comprehend our concerns. But we implore you to heed our message, and more importantly, to listen when we assert that we will not accept our jobs being replaced by machines. We will not stand by as you undermine our right to work and earn a decent livelihood. And, above all, we will not allow you to erode our dignity.