Filmmaker James Cameron weighs in on the debate over the use of AI in Hollywood, expressing far more existential fears about the technology.
James Cameron is considering the use of artificial intelligence in Hollywood, specifically addressing the issue of AI-generated screenplays. The director of films such as Terminator, Titanic and Avatar, Cameron’s films often push the boundaries of technology. The Terminator deals directly with AI, imagining a future where artificial intelligence has nearly destroyed all of humanity. Recent fears about AI have of course grown, with Hollywood actors and writers now on strike, partly due to disagreements with studios over AI.
Now, as the debate continues in Hollywood about the place of AI in the filmmaking process, Cameron discusses the topic in a recent interview with CTV News. While skeptical of an AI’s ability to write a compelling script, The Terminator director expresses his fear of technology on a much more existential level.
Is artificial intelligence happening in cinema?
“I certainly share their concern. I warned you in 1984! And you didn’t listen. You have to follow the money. Who builds these things? You’re building them to dominate marketing quotas, so what are you teaching them? Greed. Or you build for defensive purposes, so you teach him paranoia. I think the harmonization of AI is the biggest danger.
I think we’re going to get into the equivalent of a nuclear arms race with artificial intelligence, and if we don’t build it, the other guys will surely build it, and then it will escalate. Can you imagine an artificial intelligence in a theater of war, where everything is just the battle of computers at a speed where humans can no longer intervene?” says director James Cameron.
He also stated that “I definitely wouldn’t be interested in an AI writing a script for me unless it’s really good. Let’s wait 20 years, and if an AI wins an Oscar for best screenplay, I think we have to take it seriously.”
“I don’t think it’s a matter of who wrote it. It’s about “is it a good story?”. I just don’t personally believe that a non-human mind can do that… a mind that just regurgitates what other embodied minds have said – about the life they’ve had, about love, about lying, about fear, about mortality.
I don’t think he’ll ever have anything that moves audiences. You have to be human to write. I don’t know anyone who would even consider having AI write a screenplay, but I certainly don’t know everyone in Hollywood. And people in Hollywood do crazy things.”