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Indian Actor Anil Kapoor Wins Landmark AI Likeness Case

New Delhi court findings could form legal precedent for actors to protect their likenesses against unauthorised artificial intelligence use

Famous Indian actor Anil Kapoor has emerged victorious in a New Delhi court over the unauthorised use of his likeness with artificial intelligence. The court sided with Kapoor against 16 defendants who have been ordered to refrain from using the actor’s, “Name, likeness, image, voice or any other aspect of his persona to create any merchandise, ringtones… either for monetary gain or otherwise.”

Kapoor took his case to India’s high court after finding a large number of distorted videos, GIFs and emojis that used his likeness. He was also concerned about the use of his catchphrase, “jhakaas,” which translates to “awesome,” all of which are now under court protection from unauthorised use. 

Protecting the rights of actors 

Kapoor told Variety, “I think [the decision] is very progressive and great not only for me but for other actors also… Because of the way AI technology is evolving every day.” The actor went on to express his support for the striking actors in the US and hopes the news of his victory will be a positive one. 

“I am always, completely with them in every which way, and I feel their rights should be protected, because everybody, big, small, popular, not popular – every actor has the right to protect themselves,” Kapoor said.

“It’s not only for me,” said Kapoor. “Today I’m there to protect myself, but when I’m not there, the family should have the right to protect my [personality] and gain from it in future.”

As generative AI continues to grow and expand rapidly, Kapoor’s victory could pave the way for more actors whose likenesses are being used without explicit permission to take action and protect their rights as well. 

Apart from actors, authors have also stepped up to sue OpenAI for using their novels to train its flagship AI ChatGPT without their consent. The lawsuit claimed that OpenAI trained GPT-1 using a library of more than 7,000 novels on BookCorpus. 

Written By

Isa Muhammad is a writer and video game journalist covering many aspects of entertainment media including the film industry. He's steadily writing his way to the sharp end of journalism and enjoys staying informed. If he's not reading, playing video games or catching up on his favourite TV series, then he's probably writing about them.

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