Scarlett Johansson Stakes Legal Claim Over Her Digital Avatar

Taking legal action, Scarlett Johansson is fighting against an AI company that used her name and image in an advertisement without permission.

In the ad, which was shared on X/Twitter, the Hollywood star is seen promoting an AI app called Lisa AI: 90s Yearbook and Avatar. However, Johansson’s representatives have clarified that she is not affiliated with the app and her attorney has intervened legally.

The 22-second commercial features behind-the-scenes footage of Johansson from the Marvel film Black Widow, where she says, “What’s up, guys? It’s Scarlett, and I want you to come with me…”. The video then transitions to AI-generated photos resembling Johansson, with a fake voice impersonating her to promote the app.

The ad includes a disclaimer stating, “Images produced by Lisa AI. It has nothing to do with this person.” X has since removed the advert and has been flagging AI-generated content as potentially misleading since late May.

The creators of the app, Convert Software, reportedly still have several AI apps available on the iOS App Store and Google Play.

Although generative AI apps that transform pictures into avatars or generate school yearbook photos are popular online, some employ questionable methods to collect facial data and personal information.

Several celebrities have recently warned about companies misusing AI to exploit their likeness. Football legend Ian Wright and TV survivalist Bear Grylls have been featured in AI-generated ads for get-rich-quick schemes on X. Tom Hanks also cautioned his fans about a company using an AI image of him to sell dental plans.

Johansson is familiar with her likeness being misappropriated. She has previously spoken out against pornographic deepfakes, in which her face is digitally superimposed onto the bodies of adult film actors. While she finds it challenging to combat such instances, Johansson emphasized that it is a different situation for those who face job losses due to their images being illicitly used.

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