Netflix replaces its human artists with an AI to generate cartoon sets

Netflix has drawn ire from social media for using artificial intelligence to create anime instead of paying human artists. We explain to you what happened.

Netflix The Dog & The Boy

This week, Netflix aired The Dog & The Boy, a brand new three-minute short film featuring a child whose robot dog is waiting for him when he goes to war. So far, everything is pretty standard, but the particularity of this anime, directed by Ryotaro Makihara, is the way it was created.

Rather than recruiting human artists to draw the scenes, Netflix preferred to generate the sets and other backgrounds using artificial intelligence. In the announcement tweetNetflix cited a labor shortage in the industry as a justification for using the technology image synthesis, but it did not please the spectators.

Read also – Artificial intelligence will surpass that of humans in 2028, according to this company

Netflix uses AI to draw anime

Netflix and production company WIT Studio tapped Japanese artificial intelligence company Rinna to help them generate the footage. The capabilities of this AI have not been detailed, but it would be based on an “img2img” process powered by Stable Diffusion. As a reminder, the latter can take an image and transform it according to a written message.

The use of AI has genuinely provoked a fast and furious reaction from Twitter users, who claim that there is no shortage of manpower, only a shortage of companies willing to offer decent working conditions and a living wage.

Under Netflix Japan’s tweet, we can see that the general consensus is that the use of AI art generation to replace human artists is not at all appropriate for a company that makes so much profit.

Anyway, AI artwork generation has been a contentious issue in recent months, artists worried about copyright issues, theft and job losses. These problems are likely to intensify over the next few months, if big companies like Netflix also start appropriating these technologies. We let you watch the short film below, which gives a good overview of the skills of the AI.

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