Scarlett Johansson Takes Legal Action Against AI-Generated Ad Using Her Likeness

 

In yet another legal battle involving AI technology, Hollywood actor Scarlett Johansson is taking action against an AI app that used her name and likeness in an AI-generated advertisement without her consent. The ad, which surfaced on X (formerly known as Twitter), was created by an image-generating app called Lisa AI: 90’s Yearbook & Avatar. The 22-second ad featured real footage of Johansson and used it to generate a fabricated image and dialogue.

The misuse of celebrities' likenesses by AI is becoming a contentious issue, and Johansson's case sheds light on the need for more robust regulations and ethical considerations in the AI landscape. In this article, we'll delve into the details of the case, including the nature of the ad, the legal actions taken, and the broader implications of AI misappropriation in the entertainment industry.

The AI-Generated Ad:

The AI-generated advertisement in question opens with an old behind-the-scenes clip of Scarlett Johansson from the set of Marvel's "Black Widow." The actor is shown saying, "What's up guys? It's Scarlett, and I want you to come with me." However, the advertisement takes a deceptive turn as a graphic covers her mouth, and the screen transitions into AI-generated photos that resemble the actor. A fake voice, impersonating Johansson, continues to promote the AI app. This case highlights the ease with which AI can be used to manipulate and fabricate content.

Importantly, the fine print under the advertisement reads, "Images produced by Lisa AI. It has nothing to do with this person." Nevertheless, the use of Johansson's likeness raises ethical and legal concerns.

Scarlett Johansson's Response:

Representatives for Scarlett Johansson have confirmed that the actor is not affiliated with or a spokesperson for the company behind the AI app. Appropriate legal actions were initiated as soon as the ad was discovered on October 28. Johansson's attorney, Kevin Yorn, emphasized the seriousness with which they approach such situations, indicating that they will pursue all available legal remedies.

The ad has since been taken down, but this case brings attention to the urgent need for greater AI accountability and protection of individual rights in the digital age.

A Wider Issue:

Johansson is not the only actor to voice concerns about the unauthorized use of their likeness by AI. Just last month, Tom Hanks took to social media to caution his fans about an AI-generated image of him used in a dental plan's promotional video. This trend highlights the potential for AI to misappropriate individuals' identities and image rights.

Furthermore, authors and content creators have also raised concerns about AI models, like ChatGPT, being trained on their work without consent, leading to copyright infringement claims.

A Repeated Issue for Johansson:

This is not the first time Scarlett Johansson has faced the misuse of her image without her consent. In 2018, she spoke out about the use of her likeness in computer-generated "deepfakes," where AI technology is used to superimpose women's faces onto pornographic videos. At the time, she emphasized the lack of adequate regulations in the online realm and the challenges of protecting one's image and likeness in the digital age.

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