When Nicolas Cage’s character swapped faces with John Travolta’s in the 1997 blockbuster Face/Off, little did the actor expect that 20 years later fans would be using AI to swap his face with some of the most popular actors in Hollywood.
A reddit user who goes by the name Derpfakes, has been using AI to replace actors’ faces with that of Cage’s and has been producing videos which have gone viral. There have been discussions and jokes on the internet regarding Cage’s appearance in nearly any film these days and this reddit user has managed to turn those jokes into reality.
One of the most notable ‘swap’ shows Cage as James Bond in Dr. No instead of the legendary actor Sean Connery.
Cage is also seen ‘replacing’ actor Harrison Ford as Indiana Jones in a scene from the movie Raiders of the Lost Ark.
And for those who may have wished to see Cage interacting with a clone of himself, their wish seems to have been fulfilled as well. An edited clip from a segment of an old episode of Saturday Night Live shows Cage interacting with a version of himself as a result of the segment’s host Andy Samberg’s face being replaced with Cage’s.
Other hilarious swaps include Cage as Lois Lane (Amy Adams) in the movie Man Of Steel and Stannis Baratheon (Stephen Dillane) in HBO’s Game Of Thrones.
Open source AI softwares, which have been made available freely for research and academic purposes, have played a major role in this sudden surge of ‘fake’ celebrity videos. A popular application, FakeApp, is speculated to have been used to insert Cage’s and other celebrities’ faces into videos. Fakeapp employs an algorithm that can scan a person’s face from photographic inputs and digitally overlay it on faces in video content. This has lead to massive amount of such video content generated on subreddits.
Derpfakes announced on his Reddit page that he is will be moving on to other actors and sought suggestions for the next ‘torchbearer”. He said:
“This is my final Cage fake. He’s had a good run and hopefully made some people take an interest in this sub and the tech behind it, but it is time to move on. Suggestions for a new torchbearer?”
While this is an example of AI being used to create harmless content aimed to entertain, the use of AI to digitally morph faces of celebrities, and even common people, into obscene content has been on the rise lately. Recently, it was reported that Wonder Woman star, Gal Gadot’s face had been overlaid on that of an adult entertainer in a pornographic video. It has also been reported that the generation of AI doctored explicit content has not spared even regular people whose faces have been superimposed into such videos without their consent.