AI forecasting for film has gone from a tech hype to a key tool for major Hollywood studios and platforms. By analysing and combining millions of data from the film world, AI forecasting promises
to predict tomorrow’s media successes. But is it really making the film industry better and smarter? Or is it seeing distributors abandon risky, groundbreaking storytelling for safer mainstream
ventures? How do AI forecasting and the creative side of filmmaking go together?
#mthcon speaker Tobias Queisser is a co-founder and the CEO of Cinelytic. With a strong background in finance and
tech ventures – a world driven by real-time data analytics – Queisser aims to bring best practices from these industries to the film business. His start-up offers an intelligence-driven digital
service that provides easy-to-use online data and analytics resources to film industry professionals. With new audience insights it promises to help studios understand how certain choices like
the cast of a specific actor impact the revenue potential. In the eyes of Queisser, it is about time for studios to open up to the possibilities of AI forecasting – especially in view of the
competition from streaming platforms such as Netflix that have been using consumer data for content development for years and thus have a major competitive advantage.
Data vs. Creativity?
But how does AI forecasting influence the creative side of film making? One fear that is often expressed regarding the use of data and AI forecasting is that it will result in the production of
more remakes and sequels instead of new creative content. Tobias Queisser, however, disagrees: “This view could not be further from the truth. It is often based on a limited understanding of how
to use data correctly. (…) The right combination of advanced data analytics combined with creativity will benefit original content and create a more sustainable industry.”
Queisser points out that even though AI forecasting helps producers to evaluate risks and make better informed decisions, data alone will not make a good film: “Let’s be clear: The key part that
needs to work in order for content to be successful is the story and creative execution — data analysis can only be additive for creative decisions.”*
If you’re curious to find out more about the possibilities and creative implications of AI forecasting, join the #mthcon2020 session “The State of Forecasting: Is AI the Hidden Champion of Tomorrow's Media Successes?” on November 12 on our Entertainment stage. Together with the two
experts in the European audio-visual landscape Alexandra Lebret (Producer and Managing Director of the European Producers Club) and Rémi
Tereszkiewicz (CEO at BetaSeries) Tobias Queisser will debate the promise of forecasting.
* Tobias Queisser: The Misconception that Data Impedes Creativity, LinkedIn
article, May 7, 2020.