Former Autonomous Tech Executives Found AI Video Company to Produce Hollywood Films

Former Autonomous Tech Executives Found AI Video Company to Produce Hollywood Films

An AI startup called Odyssey was founded by former executives from the self-driving businesses Wayve and Voyage. The company provides Hollywood with tools for creating videos.

With ambitions to develop visual AI solutions where “beautiful scenery, characters, lighting, and motion can be both generated and directed,” Oliver Cameron, the former CEO of Voyage, introduced the business on X (Twitter).

“We believe visual AI can be a new frontier for storytelling. But, we must hold it to high standards,” Cameron said. “Today, we’re surrounded by low-quality AI-generated text and imagery. For AI to work for Hollywood, it must be capable of producing glitch-free and mind-blowing visuals.”

Along with Jeff Hawke, the first vice president of technology and researcher at Wayve, Cameron co-founded Odyssey.

Already having secured $9 million in preliminary funding from Google Ventures, DCVC, and Air Street Capital, the business has hired visual artists with experience working on successful film and television brands such as Marvel’s “Avengers,” “Dune,” and “Godzilla.”

A number of well-known angel investors, including Elad Gil, Google AI lead Jeff Dean, former Cruise CEO Kyle Vogt, and CEO of Y Combinator Garry Tan, have also backed Odyssey.

The goal of the startup is to provide visual material produced by AI that is more advanced than that of current systems.

According to Cameron, there are already too many “low-quality AI-generated text and image” solutions, and AI has to improve before it can be used in Hollywood productions.

Short silent videos can be produced by models such as OpenAI’s Sora using text prompts and still pictures. It wasn’t until June that Google DeepMind researchers discovered how to include audio in videos produced by AI.

According to the co-founder of Odyssey, more potent video generation models are required before they can be used in motion pictures.

“As a storyteller, you have little ability to direct your environment or characters, or to iterate on the finer details of your shot until it’s just right,” Cameron said.

Four generative AI models, comprising object geometry, lighting, and motion, have been developed by Odyssey.

Users can now modify the video at the layer level instead of needing to regenerate the full scene by combining the model outputs to produce the desired scene.

According to Cameron, the model’s outputs can be incorporated into pipelines that are now in use in Hollywood “and beyond.” According to the startup’s website, they might potentially be used for making video games.

Odyssey is the most recent in a long line of businesses trying to provide Hollywood and the larger creative industries access to AI tools.

Laurence Moroney, a former head for Google AI, is currently employed by VisionWorks Studios to supply Hollywood studios with predictive modeling.

DNEG Group, a business well-known for producing visual effects for popular films like “Oppenheimer,” has founded Brahma, which aims to simplify the process of making visual effects through the use of AI-powered CGI tools.