How Hayao Miyazaki made 3 researchers cry –

The director of aanimation and founder of the legendary Studio Ghibli (we have an article about it if you were interested in knowing how to recover their works), Hayao Miyazakihas always been a tech-averse type who likes to do things the old-fashioned way, especially when it comes to his craft.

In the past it has often happened that Miyazaki publicly expressed rather strong and adverse opinions on new technologies. One of the most striking examples could be dated back to 2010, when, shortly after the release of the then brand new Apple product, theiPadscompared his gestures to masturbation and defined the device “Disgusting”disdaining any benefits this new technology could bring to the industry.

miyazaki and suzuki

Therefore, when in 2016 Miyazaki and his colleague at the studio, Toshio Suzuki, were invited to a demonstration of the DwangoArtificial Intelligence Laboratory a very heated reaction was to be expected.
What the developer team was presenting, were self-created animations from some artificial intelligenceswho had learned to move without the concept of pain and who had been given an appearance that wanted to recall that of a zombie.

How Hayao Miyazaki made 3 researchers cry 2

The result was rather grotesque: despite the humanoid shape, their movements did not in the least recall those of a person; these creatures moved by crawling and using both limbs and their heads and shoulders to move, which was terribly disturbing to most of the people who attended the conference.
The team behind this work wanted to present the technology as a potential aid in the film industry, however, Miyazaki’s reaction hasn’t been exactly positive: first, he argues that that kind of limited and restricted movements would lead to a demonization of any person who lacks fine motor skills, including a close friend of hers.

“It is an insult to life itself” adds the director, going on to say how he would never use such technology for his works.

After hearing his harsh words, three of the researchers reportedly burst into tears, causing silence to fall in the hall.
The situation changes again when Suzuki asks the researchers what their goal was in developing this technology: “We would like to make a machine that can draw like a human can” was the response of one of the team members.

Perhaps not the best choice of words to convince an old-school animation director like Miyazaki, who, before leaving, left one last statement: “I feel we are near the end of time”.

hayao miyazaki

Miyazaki’s reaction is certainly very harsh and critical of what he sawbut at the same time it is natural: it is not strange to think that a person who has earned success thanks to drawing does not want to be told that he will be replaced by a machine, especially if the result is far outside his own creative vision.

To date artificial intelligences are often used in Japanese animation studios, even to assist the creation of 2D animations, with quite promising results; the thing that makes one wonder, even if it will remain a mystery, is why the technology was presented there as a substitute, and above all why they called a director like Hayao Miyazaki to listen to a conference on a still embryonic technology , notoriously unreceptive and narrow-minded regarding this type of innovation.

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How Hayao Miyazaki made 3 researchers cry –

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