Deep Fakes uploaded a video to YouTube showing the artificial intelligence behind the infamous FakeApp digitally removing actor Henry Caville's mustache. The kicker is that the same feat accomplished by an AI program running on a cheap computer was done by a digital studio team on the set of the recent Justice League movie, and removing Superman's mustache by hand on a scene by scene basis certainly cost more than the $500 it took to buy a PC to use for finishing this particular video, which also serves as a showing of FakeApp's potential beyond the controversial face swapping that has been getting the Deep Fakes community kicked out of places like Reddit.
The AI in question is actually a user-trainable neural network that can be fed video footage and have a certain person or feature pointed out to it to focus on. From there, it learns that person or object by watching the video provided, perhaps with some supplementary material. Once training is complete, it can apply digital effects in much the same vein as masks and filters on Snapchat and Facebook Messenger, but with more impressive and seamless results. Naturally, its selection of possible effects goes well beyond overlaying; for this video feat, for example, the AI had to learn the lighting for each scene, as well as how Henry Caville's face looked, in order to convincingly remove the mustache. This technology may well be a glimpse into the future of digital special effects, training an AI program to do in hours and for pennies on the dollar what would take a well-paid team of humans weeks or even months.
For those not in the know, FakeApp and the Deep Fakes community that built up around it fell into controversy mainly because of the tool's potential for face swapping in adult materials. There are numerous laws worldwide and rules in online communities surrounding subjects winding up in adult media inadvertently or surreptitiously, and that's exactly what some members of the Deep Fakes community were doing with the tool. Naturally, it could be used for evil in other ways as well, perhaps even more sinister; some possible examples include falsification of video evidence in court cases, having an actor or actress star in a budget film without their consent, and making fake videos and photos featuring portrayals of deities, world leaders, celebrities, and other prominent figures whose appearance in some forms of video or photography may stir up controversy.