Zelda Williams, daughter of late actor and comedian Robin Williams, expressed her opinion about artificial intelligence renderings of her dead father on her Instagram story Sunday.
Screenshotted by Entertainment Weekly, Zelda typed out her thoughts about AI recreations of the image and likeness of actors and actresses, particularly those who are no longer with us, like her father, who died in 2014.
“I am not an impartial voice in SAG’s fight against AI,” Williams wrote via her Instagram Story on Sunday. “I’ve witnessed for YEARS how many people want to train these models to create/recreate actors who cannot consent, like Dad. This isn’t theoretical, it is very very real.”
SAG-AFTRA, which returned to the negotiating table today with the Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers, considers AI recreations “a mandatory subject of bargaining” in its strike against the AMPTP, which began July 14.
“I’ve already heard AI used to get his ‘voice’ to say whatever people want and while I find it personally disturbing, the ramifications go far beyond my own feelings,” Zelda continued. “Living actors deserve a chance to create characters with their choices, to voice cartoons, to put their HUMAN effort and time into the pursuit of performance.”
Zelda’s observation of the replication of Robin Williams is far from the first instance where an actor’s voice and or image and likeness have been duplicated using artificial intelligence. Over the weekend, Tom Hanks reported an AI version of himself being used to sell dental plans. Actor Stephen Fry also expressed shock at AI “stealing” his voice from his narration of J.K. Rowling’s “Harry Potter” books.
“These recreations are, at their very best, a poor facsimile of greater people,” Williams concluded, “but at their worst, a horrendous Frankensteinian monster, cobbled together from the worst bits of everything this industry is, instead of what it should stand for.”
Though the Writers’ Guild of America has made its deal with the AMPTP, which includes AI guardrails, the Screen Actors Guild remains fighting for protection against AI impersonation.