John David Washington leads the sci-fi feature premiering in September.
The Big Picture
- Director Gareth Edwards hopes that his film, The Creator, will demonstrate the importance of empathy for others.
- Edwards explores the idea of treating AI as “the people who are different to us that we want to get rid of” in order to provoke thought on the ethical implications of AI.
- The film centers around John David Washington’s character, Joshua, who grapples with the dilemma of sacrificing an AI child for the greater good or viewing it as part of humanity.
The world has become an increasingly scary place for a host of different reasons, with one especially present issue within the entertainment industry being AI (artificial intelligence). In Gareth Edwards‘ The Creator, which premieres in theaters and IMAX next month, humanity battles an ongoing AI threat, something that has become eerily relevant in the past year or so. Despite the polarizing nature of AI in current society, Edwards takes a slightly different approach, aiming to showcase a side of AI and humanity’s response to it through a new lens.
During a Q&A session following an IMAX screening of The Creator, Edwards shared one of his biggest hopes for the film. He said that he hopes it ultimately demonstrates “empathy for others. That’s a strong value that I think is very important.” He continued by noting that AI was first like “the people who are different to us that we want to get rid of, or naturally have conflicts with,” then adding how it becomes more fascinating to shift those people to explicitly AI. As he was writing the story, he focused on what would happen if you kept that sort of person-to-AI mindset. He said:
“As you write that script, you start to think, ‘Are they real? What if you didn’t like what they were doing? Can you turn them off? What if they don’t want to be turned off?’ All this stuff started to play out, which became as strong as the premise. What I’m most proud of in the film is that we hung onto that. There are things in the movie that we just got very lucky with.”
John David Washington Grapples With Empathy in ‘The Creator’
The Creator centers on John David Washington‘s Joshua, a man tasked with seeking out the mysterious Creator of the very AI waging war on humanity. As it happens, the Creator also has a weapon that can end the war for good — only it’s an AI taking the form of a small child. So, Joshua begins to face a dilemma. Can he sacrifice the child — AI or not — for the sake of the greater good, or will he ultimately view the child as part of humanity itself?
The Creator releases on September 29 in theaters and IMAX. Watch the trailer below: