Hollywood A-lister Tom Cruise adds to the list of stars cloned and used in AI disinformation after his voice was used in a fake Netflix Olympics documentary titled “Olympic Has Fallen.”
The four-part series used AI to generate the star’s voice, joining a host of other stars whose voices have been replicated without their permission. The documentary is a series of AI-generated fake news stories allegedly targeting the International Olympic Committee (IOC).
According to Politico, a voiceover interspersed with shots of Tom Cruise and IOC chief Thomas Bach warns “corrupt officials” are slowly and painfully destroying the Olympic sports that have existed for thousands of years.”
Tom Cruise is one of the stars who threw their weight behind Hollywood writers and stars who were protesting against studios over several issues, including the use of AI in the film industry.
The IOC has called the fake documentaries a direct attack on the organization following a series of similar “news” spreading online, labeling it an “organized disinformation campaign.”
In one of the videos, it falsely quotes the Olympic Committee’s top spokesman, Mark Adams, saying they came close to suspending Israeli and Palestinian national teams together with their fans. The video suggests this decision was made following a meeting of delegates in India.
The videos attack the IOC and its leadership, especially Bach, alleging they are at the center of a plot to “cleverly embezzle funds from the entire sports community by way of cunning fraudulent schemes.”
“The IOC has recently been faced with a number of fake news posts targeting the IOC,” said the sports association.
In a statement, they added “an entire documentary produced with defamatory content, fake narrative, and false information, using the AI-generated voice of a world-renowned Hollywood actor.”
This comes as an array of famous people have been cloned in fake AI productions. Recently, an AI version of Tom Hanks was used in a dental advertisement. The ad was produced without his knowledge, and the Hollywood star had to warn his fans that it had nothing to do with him. Another case involves Scarlet Johansson, who sued an AI app company for cloning her voice to promote the app.
🚨 IOC statement on fake news campaigns targeting the IOC
The International Olympic Committee (IOC) has recently been faced with a number of fake news posts targeting the IOC. These are being shared on Telegram accounts and other social media platforms in a number of languages.…
— IOC MEDIA (@iocmedia) November 9, 2023
The Russian connection
The IOC ordered the removal of all the episodes of the documentary from YouTube. But it can still be accessed on Telegram. According to Politico, the fake documentary was uploaded to a Telegram channel that has more than 400,000 subscribers and is dominated by Russian-language content.
It is also reported that the fake documentary surfaced shortly after the IOC suspended the National Olympic Committee of Russia over what was said to be a decision to recognize regional sports organizations in the occupied regions of Donetsk, Luhansk, Kherson, and Zaporozhzhia in Ukraine as its members.
The IOC’s claims that they are being targeted also come after Russia complained of unfair treatment and was subjected to tough penalties in connection with the war in Ukraine, while other countries involved in separate conflicts are not facing similar punishments.
Its foreign minister, Sergey Lavrov, however, called the decision to let athletes from another country that is also at war “outrageous.”
In October, the IOC said it would only allow Russian and Belarusian athletes to participate in the 2024 Olympics in Paris if they did so under a neutral flag.
While the IOC has not directly accused anyone of the videos, they said it “will continue to monitor the situation and will take action where appropriate and necessary.”