IBM Watson Created The First-Ever AI-Made Movie Trailer For 'Morgan'

It won't be long before the machines are filmmakers, too

morgan
One of the tense moments Watson chose for the Morgan trailer.20th Century Fox

For a film about the risks of pushing the limits of technology too far, it only makes sense to advertise for it using artificial intelligence.

Morgan, staring Kate Mara and Paul Giamatti, is a sci-fi thriller about scientists who've created a synthetic humanoid whose potential has grown dangerously beyond their control. Fitting, then, that they'd employ the help of America's AI sweetheart IBM Watson to build the film's trailer.

IBM used machine learning and experimental Watson APIs, parsing out the trailers of 100 horror movies. It did visual, audio, and composition analysis of individual scenes, finding what makes each moment eerie, how the score and actors' tone of voice changed the mood--framing and lighting came together to make a complete trailer. Watson was then fed the full film, and it chose scenes for the trailer. A human--in this case, the "resident IBM filmmaker"--still needed to step in to edit for creativity. Even so, a process that would normally take weeks was reduced to hours.

Watch the full trailer, and the IBM Watson team's commentary below: