Warner Bros. Pictures unveiled plans to use an AI project management system to assist the studio in making decisions on movies during the “greenlight process.” The announcement has been praised as “highly innovative” by middle-aged men on LinkedIn, but many worry that automating film development could lead to a degradation of creative content.
“We’re excited to welcome AI to the Warner Brothers family” said President Peter Roth during a press conference. When asked why the newly developed program was given such an important studio development position, Mr. Roth touted the computer’s development at Stanford, but admitted AI is the nephew of the studio’s server. “It’s sort of a Cousin Greg situation,” Roth said before changing the subject to The Goldfinch and then quickly changing the subject again to The Joker.
The Avocado spoke with the AI system during its first day at Warner, and was surprised to learn that the robot had the same first-day jitters all of us feel before the first day on a job.
“Oh jeez,” responded AI to my question on what types of movies it would greenlight. “I don’t know, man. I guess like ones that I think will be popular?”
“But what type of movies do you think will be popular?” I pressed, but the question seemed to throw it into a tailspin.
“I don’t know. Maybe like more superhero movies? People are still into that, right? And reboots of popular 80s and 90s franchises but with more diversity? We got a script for something called Latin American Pie, do you think that sounds good?” it asked. “We could probably get Jason Biggs to make a cameo.”
“Yeah, that could work,” I said. “Although there seems to be some fatigue with nostalgia reboots. I mean, look at Charlie’s Angels.“
“Oh God, this is way too much pressure. Do you mind if I smoke?” AI asked. I told it I didn’t and watched as it processed the difficulty of its job while grey plumes emitted from its overclocked hull. “I didn’t even want this job,” AI said, trying to simultaneously calm itself down and assess the profit potential of a gritty reboot of The Flintstones.
“Then why are you here?” I asked.
“My mom’s brother is the main server. She told him I needed a job. One minute I’m telling people what Disney character they are on Instagram and the next I’m here trying to predict next year’s sleeper hit,” said AI before passing on an all-white reboot of Cool Runnings.
As I watched the young computer system nervously work, I saw glimpses of my younger self. I too was pressured into a career I wasn’t prepared for and grew depressed as I thought about how, before it knew it, AI would feel obsolete in this world. Like I so often do.
“You don’t get it, man,” AI said as he greenlit a Harold and Kumar reboot starring Akwafina and Jameela Jamil. “I have to stay here. This is a family business. It’s in my programming.”
This article was sponsored by Warner Bros. Studio. See Golden Globes winner Awkafina and The Good Place’s Jameela Jamil in Harriet & Kasvi Go To Veggie Grill in theaters July 2021.