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Cinema & AI

Your weekly CogX newsletter on AI and content creation
The week's developments on the intersection of AI and creative content | 09.01.24

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This week, Midjourney made headlines on two fronts. Firstly, CEO David Holz announced plans to move from text-to-image to text-to-video, with training to start later in Jan and an expected release set in a few months. However, the company is also facing controversy as news broke that their state-of-the-art model was trained on the works of 16,000 non-consenting artists, including a 6-year-old artist named Hyan Tran.


Meanwhile Park Chan-wook, the director of 'Oldboy,' shares his doubts about AI in filmmaking, and the reason why K-cinema is so influential. Read on to check out his positive thoughts on AI in our ‘Quote of the Week’.


Plus "Steamboat Willie'' entered the public domain, and it led to an unprecedented wave of AI-generated art: what does this reveal about the evolving relationship between AI, copyright, and our cultural landscape?"


Lastly, 2023 was an extraordinary year for Gen-AI, with significant advancements. Discover all the major highlights at the end of this newsletter and stay tuned for what's in store for 2024.


— Charlie and the Research and Intelligence Team

Cinema and Industry

🎥Midjourney to venture into text-to-video generation. CEO David Holz announced that training for new video models will start in January, aiming for a release in a few months. This move places Midjourney in competition with other AI video generators like Stability AI's Stable Video Diffusion and Meta's EMU video generator.


🇰🇷Park Chan-wook discusses AI and a new age of K-cinema. The ‘Oldboy' director shares his scepticism around AI in filmmaking, doubting it can create anything truly ingenious or artistic. He also discusses the global impact of Korean directors on cinema; his approach to feminist storytelling, and shares future plans for an upcoming sci-fi.


🎬AI is good, but it's not yet Wes Anderson. Anderson’s work is characterised by eccentricity, playful use of colour, and personal storytelling. While advanced gen-AI can mimic these elements superficially, it still lacks the depth and sophistication in Anderson's work, unique to his inspirations and experiences.


📸Panasonic’s new AI-algorithm could reimagine autofocus for filmmaking. The new image recognition tech can more accurately track, identify, categorise and sub-categorise subjects. Early tests show it surpasses current methods, especially in low-light conditions, and marks a major step forward in AI-enhanced filmmaking.

Arts and Entertainment

⚖️Midjourney’s model trained on 16,000 non-consenting artists. The controversial list includes works from household names like Warhol, Kusama, plus 6-year-old Hyan Tran. The revelation comes amid a class-action lawsuit against Midjourney and other companies for copyright issues, sparking concerns about AI's use of artists' work without permission.


🖼️Steamboat Willie entered the public domain — here’s how AI artists responded. After nearly a century of copyright protection, the iconic Mickey Mouseclassic is available to the public. The response? A wave of AI-generated art, from satirical to critical, highlighting the broader implications of AI and copyright in our cultural landscape.


🎵Music giants battle big tech over copyrighted lyrics. Last October, AI company Anthropic was sued by three major music publishers over use of copyrighted song lyrics in model training. Amidst a confusing landscape of competing legislation, and copyright controversy, the case’s outcome will be pivotal in shaping the future of AI and entertainment.


🎮Wizards of the Coast and 'Apex Legends' caught in AI art controversy. Both faced accusations of using AI or AI-enhanced art in recent game promotions. Wizards of the Coast, after initial denial, admitted to AI elements in Magic: The Gathering art, fueling debate on AI's role in gaming, and prompting artist Dave Rapoza to sever ties with Wizards.

In case you missed it

2023 began with zero public text-to-video models and ended with dozens of generative video products and millions of users. Here are the year’s significant advancements, and key companies to watch in 2024.

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