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Hollywood Is Banking That a Robot Named Erica Can Be the Next Movie Star

Hollywood Is Banking That a Robot Named Erica Can Be the Next Movie Star

7/3/2020 1:35:00 AM

Hollywood Is Banking That a Robot Named Erica Can Be the Next Movie Star

She can’t get sick or be late to the set, and her hair and makeup needs are minimal: Her name is Erica, and Hollywood is hoping that a sophisticated robot can be its next big star. The synthe…

describes as “a James Bond meets Mission Impossible story with heart.”Scribe Tarek Zohdy (“1st Born”), says, the story is about scientists who create an AI robot named Erica who quickly realize the danger of this top-secret program that is trying to perfect a human through a non-human form.

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Varietycaught up with the filmmakers Zohdy and Khoze to discuss “b” the $70 million film that plans to finish shooting next year, after a director and human star have been brought on.Who is Erica and how did she come to be in the film?Tarek Zohdy:The producers, Sam Khoze, Tom Struthers and Anoush Sadegh, in association with professors Hiroshi Ishiguro and Kohei Ogawa of the University of Osaka and Telecommunication Research Institute, took on the task of training Erica to act.

We wanted to create a story, and we wanted to do it in a revolutionary way. A robot doesn’t have life experiences so they created this persona about those experiences, and we taught her how to act.Related StoriesLatido Acquires Javier Fuentes-León’s ‘Las Mejores Familias’

We found her to be the most capable of performing as an actor. Erica has the ability for natural interaction with people by integrating various technologies such as voice recognition, human tracking, and natural motion generation. She is almost human. Visually, her human-like appearance made her the best-known candidate to play this character in the movie.

We are artists and, we are artists of color who are able to do something with our art. We want to have a very diverse cast and as a diverse filmmaking group, I think that is essential.How long did it take you to write the script and what can you tell us about the story?

Sam Khoze:Eric Pham( “Sin City”) is one of the greatest supervisors and joined us to help develop Erica as a character. He helped to develop the story for at least eight months before we went to sell the film. It’s a really beautiful story because, at its heart, Erica’s father who spent his life developing her wants her to serve humanity and change the way people look at AI and robots.

How long did it take to train Erica and get the performance you needed?Khoze:It took about two years. She’s 23-years old. She has experience. She goes to the museums once a month to meet people, so she’s a fun robot.What stage is “B” at right now and how do you see having a character like Erica being an opportunity for the film industry?

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Khoze:When we started this project in 2018, we had a director who wasn’t comfortable with having VFX in the movie.We went off and started researching and we found Erica’s creator.  We started training her and she’s been performing flawlessly. She’s probably the closest AI ever made to be an artist. We wanted to experiment to see if she would learn acting. And we basically started to training her and she performs flawlessly and very well.

We don’t want to replace actors with AI, but it’s an interesting opportunity for the entertainment industry to look at AI and robots in Hollywood.By creating her, we’ve learned she’s fully capable of communicating with people and interacting. Read more: Variety »

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What is what all these anti-robots comments. They have rights too and we should respect them. “Hollywood”? Or just these two dudes in the picture? Oh sure, just like how they thought a comedy robot from Germany would be the next great comedian. No it's not How unfortunate for us all. No thanks. Ok click bait

BenKissel and NOWWWE HenryLovesYou is gonna have a problem with the robots 🤣🤣🤖 Because there is obviously a tragic and critical shortage of young actresses willing to work. Get real, you can do better than that...lol Insane...😜😘❤️ Why not just hire a human? There are so many aspiring actors, yet they chose the most unemotional option.

Wtf Don’t hire a person of color. Build one. Years later, when our robot overlords force us to act in their films, Erica will look at us with a wry, subtle smile and laugh, thinking how far she’s come. Hollywood is a joke, it can't give black or gay actors equal opportunity to represent themselves in movies but they can give a robot a chance

I guess that's one way to cut down on actor salary costs. better than brie larsen. No Well now.. Coming for gigigoode’s gig? I don’t think The entertainment industry is obsessed w turning things that have no rights or autonomy into “starts” nightcallpod

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