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Researchers Make You Say Anything in Videos

Researchers have created a text-based method for editing talking-head video; effectively, the method allows the user to create deep fake videos of people saying anything. (See also this 216 article Face2Face Is Bradbury's Spot-Wavex Scrambler).


Editing talking-head video to change the speech content or to remove filler words is challenging. We propose a novel method to edit talking-head video based on its transcript to produce a realistic output video in which the dialogue of the speaker has been modified, while maintaining a seamless audio-visual flow (i.e. no jump cuts).

Our method automatically annotates an input talking-head video with phonemes, visemes, 3D face pose and geometry, reflectance, expression and scene illumination per frame. To edit a video, the user has to only edit the transcript, and an optimization strategy then chooses segments of the input corpus as base material.

The annotated parameters corresponding to the selected segments are seamlessly stitched together and used to produce an intermediate video representation in which the lower half of the face is rendered with a parametric face model. Finally, a recurrent video generation network transforms this representation to a photorealistic video that matches the edited transcript.

We demonstrate a large variety of edits, such as the addition, removal, and alteration of words, as well as convincing language translation and full sentence synthesis.

(Via Text-based Editing of Talking-head Video)

Ray Bradbury described a similar process in his 1953 novel Fahrenheit 451 recall the spot-wavex scrambler; this technique allowed home viewers to participate in the dramas unfolding on their TV parlors (an early prediction of big screen TVs):

...The converter attachment, which had cost them one hundred dollars, automatically supplied her name whenever the announcer addressed his anonymous audience, leaving a blank where the proper syllables could be filled in. A special spot-wavex scrambler also caused his televised image, in the area immediately about his lips, to mouth the vowels and consonants beautifully.
(Read more about Bradbury's spot-wavex scrambler)

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