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As concerns over generative AI in Hollywood grow, Chris Miller promises Spider-Man: Beyond the Spider-Verse will be free of it

"There is no generative AI in Beyond the Spider-Verse and there never will be."

Miguel O'Hara has Miles Morales pinned down in Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse.
Image credit: Sony

Generative AI use in film and TV is an increasing worry across the board, but you won't find any of it in Spider-Man: Beyond the Spider-Verse.

It's not an exaggeration to say that Into the Spider-Verse has had a big influence on 3D animation since it was released back in 2018. You can see that influence in films like Puss in Boots: The Last Wish and Turning Red, allowing more CG films to get really creative with their look. Unfortunately, over the past couple of years, we've also seen a growing interest (from suits and executives, I should make clear) in generative AI, an obvious cost-cutting measure. Indie horror flick Late Night with the Devil caught a lot of flack for its use of generative AI, and there's been many criticisms of its use in film and TV across the board - that's a big part of why the writers' strike took place last year.

Recently, during an investor event (via IndieWire), Sony Pictures Entertainment CEO Tony Vinciquerra said that the company is "very focused on AI. The biggest problem with making films today is the expense. We will be looking at ways to…produce both films for theaters and television in a more efficient way, using AI primarily." This is obviously an immediately concerning statement, as while there are legitimate uses of AI technology in film (Dune 2 being an example of this), there is no way to ethically justify use of generative AI.

A fan later expressed concern over generative AI having a presence in Beyond the Spider-Verse, but producer Chris Miller quickly put those concerns to bed. "There is no generative AI in Beyond the Spider-Verse and there never will be," Miller said on Twitter. "One of the main goals of the films is to create new visual styles that have never been seen in a studio CG film, not steal the generic plagiarized average of other artists’ work."

I should note that there is a caveat that should be mentioned here: Into the Spider-Verse did actually use some machine-learning tools to help speed up certain processes for the artists, but it didn't outright replace anyone, it just made an annoying job easier.

Also important to note is that last year a report from Vulture emerged alleging that working conditions on Across the Spider-Verse were unsustainable, with claims of overworking and crunch.

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