Succession star Brian Cox has joined the parade of actors fighting against artificial intelligence, calling it a “human rights issue.” Cox, who’s known for playing Logan Roy in the series, equated using AI to replicate an actor’s likeness as “identity theft” in an interview with Sky News this week, adding that he worries about young actors who may be primary targets.
“The younger actors are put in a situation where they’re told they have to do this and they don’t, but they don’t know that at the time, …” Cox told the outlet, referring to the increasingly common practice of studios pressuring actors to get body scans and sign away their rights.
“It doesn’t keep me up at night, but I am concerned about it and I want it to be sorted,” Cox said. “I think AI is a human rights issue. It’s not just a union issue. It’s actually an identity theft. And it’s very, very prevalent at the moment.”
And the theft isn’t just happening at the studio level. This week, actress Scarlett Johansson filed a lawsuit against an AI app for using her likeness in an unauthorized advertisement. The AI image-generating app Lisa AI posted a 22-second ad on X that used AI-generated images resembling Johansson. Her lawsuit follows complaints by other actors including Tom Hanks, Keanu Reeves, and Tom Cruise who have called out other ads for using their likeness without permission.
Hollywood actors have been on strike for more than 100 days as they fight to have safeguards against artificial intelligence, arguing that it poses a threat to their job security and control over their own likeness. Actors want their new union contracts to give them consideration and consent rights over how AI is used and adequate compensation if they decide to give producers the go-ahead.
Staying true to his character, Cox concluded in his interview that what’s happening in Hollywood has “been pretty horrendous.” He continued: “And then the deal, you know, we give you $50 or £50 to have you in perpetuity well, basically, I’d have told them to f*** off.”