IBM’s artificial intelligence powerhouse Watson can now add “cinematic genius” to its virtual resume.
For its forthcoming suspense/horror movie, Morgan, 20th Century Fox looked to IBM’s Watson to create one of its movie trailers. The movie is about an artificially enhanced human who gets herself into a lot of trouble.
An AI creating a movie trailer for a movie about an AI-infused human. So meta. The result is 100 percent creepy goodness. See for yourself above.
To do this, IBM researchers enabled Watson to analyze the trailers of 100 horror movies, looking at the visuals, the audio (such as the character’s tone of voice and the musical score), and each scene’s composition (such the location of the shot, the image framing and the lighting).
Then, Watson “watched” Morgan and selected 10 scenes its algorithms “believed” would make for the perfect trailer -- a total of six minutes of footage. IBM worked with a human filmmaker to splice the scenes together and voila, a movie trailer is artificially born!
Morgan hits theaters September 2. As of this writing, the Watson-generated trailer has 800,000+ views on YouTube.
“There are patterns and types of emotions in horror movies that resonate differently with each viewer, and the intricacies and interrelation of these are what an AI system would have to identify and understand in order to create a compelling movie trailer,” John R. Smith, IBM Fellow and manager of multimedia and vision said in a post announcing the project. “Our team was faced with the challenge of not only teaching a system to understand, ‘what is scary’, but then to create a trailer that would be considered ‘frightening and suspenseful’ by a majority of viewers.
The traditional process of sorting through movie footage and creating a movie trailer can take anywhere between 10 and 30 days to complete, Smith said. With Watson at the wheel, this trailer was whipped up in just about 24 hours. “That is the true power of AI,” he said.
For me, what “made” the trailer was how those suspenseful movie scenes were paired with creeeeeeepy sounds and music. While Watson picked the scenes, IBM’s filmmaker chose the score.
Score one for Watson. Score one for humans, too.