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Tyler Perry is shocked and worried by AI, halts plans for $800m studio expansion
Photo: © ANP

Tyler Perry is shocked and worried by AI, halts plans for $800m studio expansion

Tyler Perry is shocked and worried by AI, halts plans for $800m studio expansion
Photo: © ANP

Tyler Perry is so terrified by the emergence of AI models in the entertainment industry that he has halted plans for an $800 million expansion on his movie studio in Atlanta.

The filmmaker has a personal wealth of $1 billion according to Forbes and his movies have made around $660m at the box office.

He is a writer, actor, director and producer.

Over the last few years, AI models like ChatGPT and OpenAI's Sora have started to penetrate movie and television production and the presence of AI was a major reason why the Hollywood writer and actor strikes went on for so long, as performers wanted guaranteed job security against the artificial creation or reproduction of their content.

Having witnessed text-to-video model Sora, Perry is worried about the industry.

READ MORE: Hollywood is back in business as actors agree to END 118-day strike


“Being told that it can do all of these things is one thing, but actually seeing the capabilities, it was mind-blowing. There’s got to be some sort of regulations in order to protect us. If not, I just don’t see how we survive," he told The Hollywood Reporter.

“I have been watching AI very closely and watching the advancements very closely. I was in the middle of, and have been planning for the last four years, about an $800 million expansion at the studio, which would’ve increased the backlot a tremendous size, we were adding 12 more soundstages. All of that is currently and indefinitely on hold because of Sora and what I’m seeing. I had gotten word over the last year or so that this was coming, but I had no idea until I saw recently the demonstrations of what it’s able to do. It’s shocking to me.”

What can AI do?

With Sora specifically, all a user needs to do is type exactly what they want for a scene, for example, and an AI-generated image or video will appear.

That effectively takes away the requirement for location filming.

“I no longer would have to travel to locations. If I wanted to be in the snow in Colorado, it’s text. If I wanted to write a scene on the moon, it’s text, and this AI can generate it like nothing," Perry explained.

"If I wanted to have two people in the living room in the mountains, I don’t have to build a set in the mountains, I don’t have to put a set on my lot. I can sit in an office and do this with a computer, which is shocking to me.

“It makes me worry so much about all of the people in the business. Because as I was looking at it, I immediately started thinking of everyone in the industry who would be affected by this, including actors and grip and electric and transportation and sound and editors, and looking at this, I’m thinking this will touch every corner of our industry.”    

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