Classic sex icons may return to the screen in their former youthfulness.
When Carrie Fisher passed away late last year, mixed among the commiserations and sympathies was an interesting question: would Lucasfilm, the producers of the new Star Wars films, be digitally recreating her for future installments of the franchise?
Welcome to the 21st century: when it’s not just possible to resurrect an actor or actress, but it’s common enough that it’s become an almost recurring question when a star passes away.
Ironically, while Lucasfilm has said it has no plans for Carrie Fisher’s likeness to be computer generated in the future, it had already opened the door by inserting the artificial likeness of Peter Cushing, who passed away in 1994, in Star Wars: Rogue One. Fisher, herself, was also depicted in the film as the youthful princess she had been nearly 40 years earlier.
And Lucasfilm wasn’t the first. Paul Walker, who died before Furious 7 was completed, was similarly given a second digital life to finish the film, as was the late Oliver Reed for 2010’s Gladiator.
Speaking of Brad Pitt’s aging in The Curious Case of Benjamin Button, which was totally done through CGI, Digital Domain’s digital effects supervisor Darren Hendler told The Telegraph: “Very few people watching that film even knew that [CGI] was going on. We are at the point where we can create a digital version of an actor that is indistinguishable from the real person.”
In just a few years, the technology has gone from clumsy first attempts to frighteningly realistic iterations. Fast forward a few more years and soon we’ll have films that don’t just feature a few scenes with computer-generated actors, living or dead, but entire productions.
And, as with a lot of technological innovation, adult entertainment may very well lead the way—and which might soon put adult performers out of work.
Sex will lead the way
We already see a bit of this in adult films using CGI cartoon characters. But while a lot of them almost playfully embrace their unrealism to deliver some erotically outrageous physics—especially where breasts are concerned—soon we’ll be seeing adult entertainment that will look as good as, if not better than, the real thing.
The allure is undeniable: CGI actors don’t get tired or age, can get into any position, can outlast anyone (or anything), and can be put indefinitely on a shelf—to be brought out and used again when they come back into fashion.
Some might see, with this new world of digital actors and actress, a subculture of people interested in “real” actors. Sure, that will be a thing—for a little while. That is until the technology once again passes a hurdle: when we can’t, ever, tell digital from human. At this point, it would just mean a matter of tweaking the software to make the action even more lifelike: cellulite, bald patches, crooked teeth and more.
When will we see CGI adult stars?
The superior software will first be developed by the big movie studios, who have the bucks to really get it going. But soon it will be thoroughly embraced by the adult industry.
Part of that will be because, unlike the family and fans of someone like Carrie Fisher, adult stars will, unfortunately, have few people protesting their digital resurrections. Unless, of course, someone wants to take and use one of those mainstream actors in a digital adult production.
More than likely the first of the adult stars to be recreated will be legends like Bettie Page. Then we’ll also begin to see aging stars embracing the technology to recreate themselves, minus a few decades. They’ll be able to license their likenesses to create even a form of digital alternative reality: want to see what happened when Bettie Page met Ron Jeremy? Soon you’ll be able to.
Software for our hardware
This, of course, will change how adult stars are hired as well as how their careers might run. Instead of shooting in front of cameras, a periodic scan will be done, so their likeness can look more realistic by aging over time. The serious, and sexy, action will then take place on a hard drive: eroticism via software.
As with the licensing of celebrities for sexbots, they’ll soon be a whole world of people using entertainers, adult variety or not, in their own erotic productions at home. And, again as with pleasure androids, the smart people will be the one’s releasing their faces and forms with added extras and higher resolution to entice people to pay instead of just pirate.
Jumping ahead a few more years and we’ll see the end of humans in the adult industry altogether—no longer in front of, or even behind, the figurative cameras. Artificial Intelligences will then be studying and making minute adjustments to the erotic content of any production, perhaps reading the viewer’s pulse rate and breathing patterns to know when to ramp up, or turn down, the action.
Ironically, when this happens human beings will probably be enjoying erotic entertainment like they’d never seen before: finely tuned, precisely constructed, using CGI replicas of both real people as well as completely artificial creations—software produced by software but enjoyed by human beings.
Image sources: Jimi Photog, Pierre Tourigny