Scarlett Johansson ‘shocked’ by AI chatbot imitation

Scarlett Johansson ‘shocked’ by AI chatbot imitation

Hollywood actress Scarlett Johansson has expressed shock and anger after OpenAI released a chatbot with a voice that closely resembled her own.

The chatbot, named Sky, was compared to Johansson’s voice in the movie “Her” by commentators upon its debut last week.

Johansson revealed that she had declined an offer from OpenAI to voice the chatbot, but the company went ahead with a voice that she felt was too similar to hers. In a statement, Johansson accused OpenAI founder Sam Altman of intentionally copying her voice.

The actress explained that Altman had approached her in September to voice the chatbot, believing that her voice would be comforting to consumers. Despite initially turning down the offer for personal reasons, Altman urged her to reconsider just days before the chatbot’s release.

Feeling compelled to take legal action, Johansson sent two legal letters to OpenAI to understand how her voice had been replicated. She emphasized the importance of clarity in protecting one’s likeness and identity, especially in the era of deepfakes.

OpenAI responded by stating that the Sky voice was not meant to imitate a celebrity’s voice and that they were pausing the voice to address concerns. The company explained that the voices used for the chatbot were sampled from voice actors they partnered with.

Johansson’s legal actions come amidst impending lawsuits against OpenAI, including a plan by the New York Times to sue over alleged use of their articles to train AI models. Authors George R.R. Martin and John Grisham also plan to pursue a claim against the company for copyright infringement.


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