Mark Murphy, Solar Productions company director, works as a writer, director and producer, having worked on several hit movies and television series including For Love Or Money and The Comedian’s Guide to Survival.
Mark Murphy, director of the fascinating television series Casanova’s Love Letters, released his first feature film ,The Crypt, in 2013, followed by Awaiting in 2014, directing a film starring Rupert Hill, Tony Curran and Diana Vickers that won best picture and best director awards at several international film festivals.
This article will look at the ever-increasing implementation of AI and automation in filmmaking processes, providing an overview of some of the technology’s benefits and shortcomings.
In terms of streamlining operations and making processes more efficient and cost effective, AI is having a transformational impact on various industries today, and filmmaking is no exception.
Monica Landers is the founder and CEO of StoryFit, a company that uses AI to compile data on storytelling elements within scripts, providing valuable insights into their significance and efficacy. These insights can be used throughout the screening process to help studios decide which scripts to acquire, which books to adapt into film and which characters to promote.
In an interview with Forbes, Monica Landers explained that she believes storytelling is humanity, pointing out that it seems very abrasive to say ‘Let’s apply technology to that.’ Rather than focusing on creative elements, StoryFit provides data to support decision-making processes.
Originally developed for the publishing market, StoryFit was designed to aid publishers in whittling down their ‘slush piles’, helping them to narrow down thousands of submissions to a shortlist of promising books. Monica Landers explained that the company felt like they were doing good by uncovering writers who might not have been discovered otherwise, while also helping publishers to get their work done.
In time, StoryFit eventually came to the end of the line in terms of growth potential in the publishing industry, turning its sights instead to filmmaking. As a result, it has become a driving force behind several hit television series and movies in recent years.
In essence, StoryFit analyses scripts, assessing their marketability; where they fit with audiences; and how each element of the narrative resonates. The film industry remains a high-risk market today, with vast sums of investment required so that production can start and a long wait until the movie starts generating returns. StoryFit analyses data to find the most promising project.
AI is a hot topic in 2023 across multiple industries, with vast swathes of the population worried that their jobs may soon be swallowed up by robots, AI and automation. However, in moviemaking, just like many other sectors, the potential benefits of advanced technologies are impossible to deny.
Mark Murphy recently tasked an AI app with coming up with an exciting new superhero. The app’s response was Lightning Strike, aka Lucas Jackson, an ordinary electrical engineer who and was granted superhuman powers as a result of a catastrophic explosion when a lightning bolt struck the power plant where he worked. By some miracle, Lucas survived the blast but the incident left him forever changed, with the electricity fusing with his DNA as it coursed through his veins, granting him incredible powers.
In addition to the character’s backstory, the AI app also went into depth about his superpowers; personality; appearance and costume; and archnemesis. What is startling to note is that the AI app produced all of this information within the space of a single minute.
Tasked with writing a scene, Mark Murphy concedes that the AI app’s performance was somewhat less impressive, describing the end result as ‘painfully horrible’, although the script was once more produced in under a minute.
AI has quickly grown to have a game-changing impact on film production. Although it may yet have far to go in terms of screenwriting, in other aspects of moviemaking – such as special effects, casting and film distribution – it is having a revolutionary impact, transforming the way that movies are made and seen.
One of the biggest benefits of AI in filmmaking is its potential to save resources and time. AI is increasingly being used to improve the efficiency and accuracy of casting decisions, with AI-powered platforms used to analyse huge troves of data, weighing up aspects such as actors’ social media activity and past performance data to predict which candidates are most likely to be successful in a given role.
In the realms of visual effects, AI already reigns supreme, enabling moviemakers to leverage increasingly sophisticated machine learning algorithms capable of recognising and classifying different objects in a scene, making it simpler and faster than ever before to add visual effects.
Although AI apps may still have far to go in terms of screenwriting and plot development, as Mark Murphy points out, this is only the start of AI. It is impossible to predict how far the technology will progress in the months and years to come.