The Inventor Director Encourages Everyone to Find Their Own Genius Without AI


Artificial intelligence has, controversially, become one of the most insisted upon and yet equally resisted tools in business, education, and creative careers. While some may insist that the simulation of human brainpower is a welcomed development, others will counter and claim that it is detrimental to the existence of humankind. In fact, one of the main contingencies in the film and television industry-wide strikes — the Writers Guild and the Screen Actors Guild — is in regard to A.I. and its threat to replace human thinkers.

In a recent exclusive interview with MovieWeb, Academy Award-winning screenwriter (Ratatouille) Jim Capobianco recently explained how The Inventor, his new independently produced animated film with co-director Pierre-Luc Granjon, though not intended to be an anti-artificial intelligence film, nonetheless offers a hopeful reminder about the everlasting need for human intellect.

Filming Leonardo da Vinci

The Inventor
Blue Fox Entertainment

The Inventor is a partly stop-motion animated feature about the life of Leonardo da Vinci after he flees Italy for France and begins his quest for the meaning of life alongside French princess Marguerite de Nevarre. A refreshing takeaway from The Inventor is the subliminal reminder that while great minds in history deserve to be celebrated, current scholars and potential prodigies also need to be encouraged to freely explore using their own minds for humanity’s sake, preservation, and progress.

Related: 12 Unforgettable Movies About Painters

To demystify the brilliance of da Vinci and level the idea that such greatness is accessible, Capobianco said that part of the goal of The Inventor was to intentionally humanize da Vinci:

We wanted to present Leonardo in a new way, a way that people — both kids and adults — can watch the film and afterward reflect and realize, ‘Oh, he was a real human.’

He continued. “And then the thought becomes, even though Leonardo was a genius, maybe there’s some aspect of it that we all, too, can draw from in our own lives. Perhaps people can come away from watching The Inventor and feel that maybe there’s actually a bit of a genius in all of us.”

It’s a very important and timely message for today’s youth, especially, as society becomes more and more encouraged to be dependent on technology and less and less reminded to utilize one’s own capable brains.

“Dealing with all these things we’re dealing with today, we need this message,” the screenwriter and co-director explained. “We need the reminder to treat each other with kindness while inspiring each other and passing on knowledge to others.”

The Inventor’s Perfect Timing Despite Its Long Journey

The Inventor
Blue Fox Entertainment

Capobianco stressed that although the message of The Inventor is a well-timed one with the current state of the world, it took 12 years for it to reach this debut. In fact, the first 10 years of development for the film — from the onset of idea conception — were focused almost exclusively on finding investors despite the historical significance of da Vinci’s life. This isn’t because investors didn’t see the value of his legacy.

Arguably most famous for his paintings “The Last Supper” and “Mona Lisa,” da Vinci was also an engineer, architect, scientist, and philosopher, and was known for his futuristic inventions. The genius remained curious about life even in his elderly years before dying in 1519. Despite the artist’s solidified and respectable place in history, Capobianco explained the hesitancy in investing in a film about da Vinci from the perspective of film investors:

In today’s market, they are seeking IP for investments. They really want to invest in content where there can be sequels and such. So even though, yes, the film is about the Leonardo da Vinci, the challenge was that people don’t feel that they can hold on to him. He’s everywhere. He belongs to everybody.

The uniqueness of the story was also a green-light block that the film faced on the journey to production, from a business aspect. It’s not a typical plot setup with comical one-liners that is so popular with today’s animated films, and it’s concerned with some very big themes. More so, aesthetically, it’s a hybrid stop-motion puppet and hand-drawn production. The Inventor literally doesn’t look like a lot of animation does today.

Related: 20 Animated Movies With Extremely Unique Animation

In fact, because of these distinctions, Capobianco had to pursue other markets outside just the United States to get the film made:

“The only place that we could successfully go was Europe. France has such a unique and artistic approach to animation and a different type of appreciation for animation, so The Inventor found its home there in the right way. Plus, the film takes place in France. It was the perfect setting for the production.”

Imagine that. Human beings used their own minds to take on an innovative approach to produce a film that celebrates and encourages natural-born intellectual innovation. It’s a small victory against artificial intelligence in this long and ongoing war.

The Inventor will be released in theaters on September 15th, 2023. The film’s amazing voice cast includes Stephen Fry, Marion Cotillard, Daisy Ridley, and Matt Berry.

You can watch the official trailer for The Inventor below:

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