TECHNOLOGY

AI-GENERATED TELEVISION SOAPS EXPECTED WITHIN FIVE YEARS, SAYS LEADING DIRECTOR

AI Revolutionizes Television: Subheading Forecasts Dramatic Shift in Scriptwriting and Production

28.02.2024
BY MAXWELL SOETOMO
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In a groundbreaking revelation, James Hawes, vice-chairman of Directors UK and renowned director of the Apple TV+ hit "Slow Horses" starring Gary Oldman, has indicated that artificial intelligence (AI) may revolutionize the television industry within the next three to five years. Speaking before the parliament's Culture, Media, and Sport committee inquiry into British film and high-end television, Hawes proposed that AI-generated scripts could soon become commonplace, particularly in the realm of television soaps.

The inspiration for this prediction came during a forum organized by Directors UK, where discussions centered around "Doctors," a BBC show that recently faced cancellation. Hawes recounted how a fellow member's mention of AI sparked his curiosity, prompting him to delve into the feasibility of AI-produced content for shows like "Doctors."

"After conducting polls with various visual effects (VFX) experts and consulting legal teams involved with industry guilds like SAG and the Writers Guild, it became apparent that AI-generated scripts and footage could become a reality within three to five years," Hawes revealed.

The prospect of AI taking over scriptwriting and even potentially replacing human actors has stirred both excitement and apprehension within the industry. Hawes pointed to recent advancements in AI technology, such as OpenAI's Sora tool, capable of generating highly realistic video content in a matter of seconds, as evidence of the rapid progress in this field.

"Although AI-generated content may not yet achieve perfection in mimicking live-action, the advancements are remarkable and suggest imminent changes," Hawes asserted.

However, doubts persist regarding the effectiveness of AI in the creative process, particularly in scriptwriting. Noted writer Charlie Brooker, famous for his work on the dystopian series "Black Mirror," shared his experience of attempting to utilize AI, specifically ChatGPT, to craft a script for the show's sixth season. Brooker expressed frustration at the AI's inability to produce truly original content, likening its output to a regurgitation of existing material rather than genuine innovation.

Despite these reservations, Hawes emphasized the potential of AI to streamline production processes and even aid parliamentary proceedings. Hawes disclosed that he had tasked ChatGPT with predicting the committee's questions prior to his appearance, with surprisingly accurate results, underscoring AI's growing influence beyond entertainment.

As the entertainment landscape continues to evolve, propelled by technological advancements, the prospect of AI-generated television soaps challenges traditional notions of creativity and raises profound questions about the future of storytelling. With the countdown to AI's integration into the mainstream television industry underway, the boundaries between human and machine creativity blur, promising both unprecedented innovation and unforeseen challenges.

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