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Anime guru Miyazaki slams AI

Famed Japanese filmmaker Hayao Miyazaki is no fan of artificial intelligence, especially as it relates to grotesque imagery.

In a story on Recode, Miyazaki is seen in a short video, where he is shown movements created by AI with contorted figures moving across a screen, one headless and dragging its body by a leg, the other creepily twisted. The announcer is saying, in Japanese, how the figures could be used in zombie games.

“An artificial intelligence could present us with grotesque movements which we humans can’t imagine,” says the presenter.

Miyazaki’s reaction is one of restrained disgust. He recounts dealing with a friend who has a disability, whose muscles don’t cooperate and finds it difficult to even do a high five.

“Thinking of him, I can’t watch this stuff and find interesting. Whoever creates this stuff has no idea what pain is or whatsoever. I am utterly disgusted. If you really want to make creepy stuff, you can go ahead and do it. I would never wish to incorporate this technology into my work at all. I strongly feel this is an insult to life itself,” says Miyazaki.

The panel presenting the video to the Studio Ghibli, which Miyazaki co-founded, is seen stunned. They try to defend themselves, saying that they just want to “build a machine that can draw pictures like humans do.”

Miyazaki is not amused. The filmmaker of such hits as “Princess Mononoke” and “Spirited Away,” announced recently that he was coming out of retirement to expand his short CG film, “Kemushi no Boro” (Boro the Caterpillar), and turn it into a full-length film.

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