Warner Music starts AI project to create biopic of French singer Edith Piaf

November 14, 2023

AI music

In partnership with Edith Piaf’s estate, Warner Music is undertaking a pioneering project to produce a 90-minute animated biopic of the French singer, utilizing AI technology to recreate her voice. 

Alain Veille, CEO of Warner Music France, described the unique nature of the project, “Edith is one of France’s greatest ever artists, and she is still a source of so much pride to the French people. It is such a delicate balancing act when combining new technology with heritage artists, and it was imperative to us that we worked closely with Edith’s estate and handled this project with the utmost respect.”

The film, titled “Edith,” will feature Piaf’s AI-generated voice and is set in Paris and New York, spanning the 1920s to the 1960s. It aims to blend animation with archival material, including Piaf’s stage and TV performances, interviews, and personal footage. 

Julie Veille, who is at the helm of this creative endeavor, remarked on the significance of Piaf’s story: “Her story is one of incredible resilience, of overcoming struggles, and defying social norms to achieve greatness – and one that is as relevant now as it was then. Our goal is to utilize the latest advancements in animation and technology to bring the timeless story to audiences of all ages.”

The biopic also plans to showcase Piaf’s journey through her challenges and her role as a symbol of female empowerment. 

The film will feature original recordings of Piaf’s most famous songs, including “La Vie En Rose” and “Non, Je Ne Regrette Rien.” 

Catherine Glavas and Christie Laume, executors of Piaf’s estate, expressed optimism about the project: “It’s been a special and touching experience to be able to hear Edith’s voice once again — the technology has made it feel like we were back in the room with her. The animation is beautiful and through this film we’ll be able to show the real side of Edith — her joyful personality, her humor and her unwavering spirit.”

This innovative approach to storytelling aims to bring Piaf’s legacy to new audiences, marrying her iconic voice with cutting-edge technology.

It’s an interesting and wholesome use of AI technology’s ability to ‘resurrect’ people and their work – which is bound to be much more common in the forthcoming years. Deceased actors, like James Dean, have even been posthumously cast in movies.

The Beatles recently released “Now and Then” with vocals from the late John Lennon, which both Paul McCartney and Lennon’s son said he would have loved – which is the key. 

AI will bring Piaf’s fascinating story to the masses, uncovering aspects of her life unknown to most. 

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Sam Jeans

Sam is a science and technology writer who has worked in various AI startups. When he’s not writing, he can be found reading medical journals or digging through boxes of vinyl records.


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