Anthony Bourdain doc director admits to using A.I. to fake voice

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New York Post 15 July, 2021 - 09:27pm 31 views

When will Roadrunner be on HBO Max?

It is scheduled to be released on July 16, 2021 by Focus Features, after which it will air on CNN and HBO Max on an unspecified date. wikipedia.orgRoadrunner: A Film About Anthony Bourdain

Where can i stream Roadrunner?

Following the festival debut, ROADRUNNER will be released in theaters on July 16. After its theater run, fans will have the chance to stream it in full on HBO Max and CNN. Delish.comThe Documentary About Anthony Bourdain's Life Will Hit Theaters Tomorrow

An 'A.I. model' of Anthony Bourdain's voice says lines he never uttered in new documentary

Input 16 July, 2021 - 06:00am

“We can have a documentary-ethics panel about it later,” said director Morgan Neville.

It’s also a slippery slope, because if you’re going to fake Bourdain’s voice, why not go all-in and recreate scenes with him using CGI? Why not have him discuss his own death? Or talk about his regrets? Or perhaps perform a closing monologue?

Bringing back dead celebrity lawyers for their celebrity daughter’s birthday via hologram is weird enough, but given the Kardashian family's love of the limelight, conceivably something Robert would’ve signed off on while he was still alive. But it’s hard to imagine Bourdain, fiercely private as he was, would ever have wished for this.

Why Roadrunner Director Morgan Neville Skipped Interviewing Asia Argento

Vulture 16 July, 2021 - 06:00am

The new documentary Roadrunner (which arrives in theaters July 16 and will later air on CNN and stream on HBO Max) vividly unpacks the career ascendancy of the roguish truth teller, whose final decades could be fairly defined by their superlatives. A former cocaine and heroin addict, Bourdain traveled the farthest, ate the wildest things, and spent time with some of the most intriguing people on earth.

Roadrunner’s director Morgan Neville (20 Feet From Stardom, Won’t You Be My Neighbor, Netflix’s Ugly Delicious), however, admits he was only willing to delve so far into the circumstances surrounding Bourdain’s death by suicide. Most contentiously, Neville chose not to interview the author-chef’s last girlfriend, Asia Argento — the Italian actress-filmmaker and one of the figureheads of the Me Too movement, who was photographed by an Italian tabloid in what appeared to be the romantic embrace of another man a few days prior to Bourdain’s death.

Although Argento’s limited presence in Roadrunner raises more questions than it answers, Neville insists that speaking to her would have “been painful for a lot of people.” He tells Vulture an interview with Argento would have distracted from the story of what made Anthony Bourdain who he was. “It instantly just made people want to ask ten more questions,” Neville says. “It became this kind of narrative quicksand.”

But the thing I was also very leery of in the beginning is for the film to feel like a eulogy; we often read history backward, but we live history forward. And so how do we kind of be in the moment with him? Because there is so much that is funny and exciting. So in a way, I felt excited [to learn] about all this stuff that made him who he was. And then it was the weight of contemplating and understanding his death and then trying to build a bridge from the beginning to the end.

What I came to realize pretty early on is those threads were there all the time. Rereading Kitchen Confidential, there are passages in that book that are pitch black. Where he talks about: “If I get hit by an ice cream truck and they’re peeling the bumper out of my head while I’m dying, I’m not going to wish that I had eaten more or traveled more or taken more drugs. I’m just going to regret how much I disappointed people in my life.” He wrote that in 1999.

He joked about it. Nobody really understood the depths of that fascination around it. It’d been there for so long people just assumed, “Oh, that’s Tony. He has a black sense of humor.” In Medium Raw, he told this story once — in some raw footage, and we almost put the scene in — of almost driving off a cliff. Around 2004, he had split from his first wife and was in Saint Martin, the island he liked to go in the Caribbean. There’s a mountain pass, and he was drunk. He was going to drive over the edge of the road. And when the Chambers Brothers came on the radio, he decided that was a sign not to and turned the steering wheel.

But at a certain point, everybody had said, “Okay, if we’re going to make a film, what’s that actually going to look like?” More than a year after he died, I was having a conversation with CNN and they said, “We’re working on this. Are you interested?”

Part of it is, I want to tell a story. I want to feel like it’s the authoritative story, that I would have access to everything. There was a certain feeling among people in Tony’s world that this was a once-in-a-lifetime thing. Ottavia says in the film, “This is the only time I’m ever going to talk about this publicly.” But at least three or four other people said the same thing to me. There was just this sense of, I need to tell the story. I’m going to do it now, and then I don’t ever have to do it again. Several people were reluctant, but they all came around.

The first meeting I had with Chris and Lydia [Chris Collins and Lydia Tenaglia were executive producers on Bourdain’s shows for 19 years and are founders of Zero Point Zero Productions], I started talking about how important I thought the show was and what they had done and what Tony had done to humanize people in cultures on the far side of the planet. I was going on and they were nodding and finally they stopped me and said, “Yeah, but you have to remember, Tony could be such an asshole.”

I felt like there was a lot of that, Don’t sanctify him. There is so much sanctification that goes on in the wake of somebody’s death where people want to put him on a pedestal. That was so not Tony.

It just became this thing that made me feel like I was sinking into this rabbit hole of she said, they said, and it just was not the film I wanted to make. I just want to know why he was who he was and felt like the balance of the film would have tipped over if I had put her in it.

Again, we played with edits of trying to go deeper into the story and looking at everything she had said. And every time I even screened it for people in longer versions, all I got were people wanting to go down this rabbit hole of more and more about their relationship in the last year of his life. I felt like I’m trying to make a psychological portrait of a person’s entire life. And I just didn’t want to be capsized by it. So I made the call. People can disagree.

I went back and reread Kitchen Confidential with Me Too in mind, and I think he has nothing but respect for women in that book. The women are badasses in that book. And in a way, I felt like he was being harder on himself than he needed to be. What he was reacting to — which is not really in the book — was more of a kind of permission and a kind of pirate’s life of being in the kitchen.

But Tony himself, I never heard about him sleeping with anybody. I’m not saying it didn’t happen, but, I mean, he was in a very committed, very monogamous relationship his entire culinary career. From the time he was 15 till he was 47, he was in a single relationship with a woman who he really loved. So I don’t think there’s any there there. Honestly.

Posthumous Anthony Bourdain Doc Used ‘AI Model’ of Chef’s Voice

Vulture 16 July, 2021 - 06:00am

That documentary-ethics panel seems to be playing out on Twitter, where film critics and fans expressed discomfort at the idea of Bourdain’s voice being used to express things he never actually said, especially considering he once accused the Travel Channel of editing his voice-over on No Reservations to make it sound like he was endorsing Cadillacs. Neville provided more details in an interview with GQ, clarifying that he wanted to include some thoughts that Bourdain had written, but never actually said aloud.

“I wasn’t putting words into his mouth,” he explained. “I was just trying to make them come alive.” Neville also indicated that he got the blessing of Bourdain’s widow and literary agent, who told him, “Tony would have been cool with that.” (Presumably the widow he’s referring to is Bourdain’s estranged wife, Ottavia Busia, who is interviewed in Roadrunner. Neville has also been criticized for neglecting to interview Bourdain’s girlfriend at the time of his death, Asia Argento.) Tony may or may not have been cool with that, but the Twitterati certainly isn’t.

Anthony Bourdain

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