As the entertainment industry continues to deal with the Coronavirus pandemic, Bondit Capital Media has come up with a novel solution in the face of COVID-19. The Santa Monica-based film, TV, and media financier has cast an AI actor named Erica to star in B, a science fiction film with a budget of $70 million.
B is touted to the world’s first film featuring an AI actor as its star. The sci-fi film tells the story of a scientist who creates a program to perfect human DNA, which ultimately goes awry. The scientist spends the duration of the film helping his AI creation, which will be played by Erica, escape. The story was penned by Eric Pham, Sam Khoze, and Tarek Zohdy.
Erica was initially created as part of a robotics study by Hiroshi Ishiguro and Kohei Ogawa, who are scientists in Japan. By using method action principles, Ishiguro and Ogawa were able to teach Erica to act.
Sam Khoze said, “In other methods of acting, actors involve their own life experiences in the role. But Erica has no life experiences. She was created from scratch to play the role. We had to simulate her motions through one-on-one sessions, such as controlling the speed of her movements, talking through her feelings and coaching character development and body language.”
Erica was expected to make her debut in a film directed by Tony Kaye of American History X fame. But after scheduling conflicts, both parties walked away from the project. Although some scenes have already been shot in Japan, B is expected to be completed in Europe in the next 12 months.
Bondit Capital Media is best known for financing To the Bone and Loving Vincent, which earned an Oscar nomination in 2018. The media company joins Happy Moon Productions of Belgium and Ten Ten Global Media Inc. of New York of Belgium in funding B.