The new Marvel Secret Invasion which debuted today with just one episode is already causing a stir online, though not the reasons the studio hoped for. The opening credits, designed by Method Studios, were generated by AI, and it has prompted backlash from audiences, with many pointing out that using Artificial Intelligence presumably eliminated the need for graphic designers and animators to craft the opening credits.
The argument over using AI for Secret Invasion is timely, as the WGA is on strike after failed discussions with the Association of Motion Pictures and Television Producers about protecting writers against using the technology in the writing process.
Deadline reported that over the past eight weeks, the use of Artificial Intelligence to replace workers has come to the forefront of many discussions about the strike. Most of the audiences that have seen the opening credits of Marvel’s Secret Invasion specifically mentioned the writer’s struggle while a few others claimed they have simply decided not to continue watching the series. “This is salt in the wounds of all Artists and Writers in the WGA strike,” Jon Lam, a storyboard artist, wrote on Twitter.
Another user wrote: “I really loved the first episode of secret invasion but them using AI “art” for their intro is just wack. Do better Marvel.” However, director Ali Selim confirmed to Polygon that the opening credits were generated by artificial intelligence and had he thought the idea of using the technology fit into the themes of the show. “When we reached out to the AI vendors, that was part of it — it just came right out of the shape-shifting, Skrull world identity, you know? Who did this? Who is this?” he said.
Of the process, Selim added: “We would talk to them about ideas and themes and words, and then the computer would go off and do something. And then we could change it a little bit by using words, and it would change.” However, Secret Invasion is an MCU series featuring Samuel L. Jackson as Nick Fury. The storyline centers on a faction of shapeshifting aliens called “Skrulls” that infiltrated Earth, prompting Fury and his former Skrull ally, Talos, to respond.
Of the backlash, Jeff Simpson a concept artist who directly worked on the Secret Invasion TV series for Marvel, also tweeted, “Secret Invasion intro is AI generated. I’m devastated, I believe AI to be unethical, dangerous, and designed solely to eliminate artists’ careers. Spent almost half a year working on this show and had a fantastic experience working with the most amazing people I ever met.” In a following tweet, he clarified that he had nothing to do with the AI-generated intro.
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