Bruce Willis has sold the rights to his likeness to a deepfake company called Deepcake.
The Die Hard star announced in March that he was retiring from acting, and now he has given his face a chance to return to the screen without ever appearing on set.
The Telegraph reports that Willis has signed a deal with Deepcake to allow the company to create a “digital twin” of the actor using deepfake technology.
Deepfake technology is a synthetic media in which a person or existing image is replaced with someone else’s likeness. This means Willis’ deal allows Deepcake to paste his likeness onto another image so it appears as if Willis is acting, speaking, or moving.
In a statement on the company’s website, Willis revealed that a deepfake of himself has already been used on a project.
“I liked the precision with which my character turned out. It’s a mini-movie in my usual action-comedy genre. For me, it is a great opportunity to go back in time,” he said. “With the advent of modern technology, even when I was on another continent, I was able to communicate, work and participate in the filming. It’s a very new and interesting experience, and I thank our entire team.”
Willis stepped away from acting after being diagnosed with aphasia, which causes difficulties in a person’s understanding of language or speech. A statement from his family released at the time explained that the disorder is “impacting his cognitive abilities”.
– Cover Media