A new documentary from CNN Films about Anthony Bourdain is causing a ruckus after it was revealed the filmmaker used artificial intelligence technology to mimic the voice of the late celebrity chef, leading some to voice ethical concerns over the use of deepfakes.
Roadrunner: A Film About Anthony Bourdain, which opened Friday in cinemas, uses AI to simulate the voice of Anthony Bourdain reading passages from an e-mail correspondence. Director Morgan Neville acknowledged the digital sleight of hand after The New Yorker’s Helen Rosner asked him how he found an audio recording of Bourdain reading from his own e-mail.
Neville told the magazine: “If you watch the film, other than that line you mentioned, you probably don’t know what the other lines are that were spoken by the A.I., and you’re not going to know. We can have a documentary-ethics panel about it later.”
His seemingly unapologetic reply has elicited a backlash