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    AI’s Potential in Filmmaking: Indian Film Industry Leaders’ Perspectives at MIFF 2024

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    Entertainment industry members spoke about the potential impact of Artificial Intelligence (AI) on film-making during ‘The Magic of AI’ session at the Mumbai International Film Festival (MIFF) 2024. While some spoke about AI’s impact on labour, others discussed how AI could help newcomers and small creators when used in an ethical manner. What was most interesting about the discussion was how it can be juxtaposed against parallel conversations outside India where creators approach the new technology with more scepticism.

    Expectations for AI in the film industry

    Panelist Sankar Ramakrishnan, Senior Filmmaker and AI Expert from Trivandrum said that AI can increase efficiency by managing numerous tasks on film sets and minimising the time required for each job. He also said AI can reduce the need for human labor, although it would make people “lazy” and “overly reliant on technology.”

    Ujwal Nirgudkar, Chairman of the Society of Motion Picture & Television Engineers, India and Technical Advisor to the National Film Heritage Mission said AI has the potential to level the playing field for newcomers and small creators in the film industry. Nirgudkar said AI can suggest necessary components for projects if storyboards are ready but warned that the technology must be used ethically. Similarly, Sanath P.C., Cofounder and Director at Firefly Creative Studio talked about the responsible use of AI while discussing the scope of its “self-thinking” capabilities to enhance storytelling in films.

    Sanjay Jangid, Dean of Animation and Design at Chitkara University warned against using AI as a shortcut, by saying, “If you put garbage in, you will get garbage out. We should use AI carefully and for good causes only.”

    India is at odds with countries like the US

    It’s interesting to see how India’s stand on the entry of AI in the entertainment industry diverges from the US. In April, an American union of media professionals – the Screen Actors Guild-American Federation of Television and Radio Artists (SAG-AFTRA) – reached a tentative agreement with leading record labels on a successor contract for sound recordings. The agreement came after a letter from over 200 musicians asked AI developers, companies, platforms, and other stakeholders to “cease the use of artificial intelligence (AI) to infringe upon and devalue the rights of human artists.”

    There are rising concerns regarding copyrights and royalties held by artists, and procedures to regulate AI-generated “music.” The US State of Tennessee even enacted the Ensuring Likeness Voice and Image Security (ELVIS) Act, which aims to protect music industry professionals, singers, and performers from associated hazards such as AI voice cloning.

    However, in India, leaders in the industry seem more invested in the potential of AI. Even during FICCI Frames 2024, at least a part of India’s music industry professionals termed AI as a ‘great enabler’. One speaker Shreyas Puranik even spoke about how the industry is already using AI for routine tasks.

    What becomes of the artist?

    Despite the apparent demand for AI, some experts in India like Ashish Hemrajani, Book My Show CEO, point out that AI could harm the artist as well. During Mumbai’s Tech Week on February 18, Hemrajani said that AI allows individuals to create multiple versions of the same content leading to copyright infringement and theft issues owing to lack of traceability.

    He stressed the need for AI regulation to bring back versions of where the economy flows back to the artist and the creators. He also alluded to the strike by writers in the US against the use of AI for creative purposes.

    Similarly, Pravin Anand, Managing Partner at Anand and Anand, stressed the need for regulation of generative AI within the context of IP law during a FICCI Frames event. He argued for a consent-based approach in IP law with the authorship of the generated AI-content being in the hands of the person who caused the work to be created.

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    The post AI’s Potential in Filmmaking: Indian Film Industry Leaders’ Perspectives at MIFF 2024 appeared first on MEDIANAMA.

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