Deepfake Ryan Reynolds Promotes Tesla and Deepfake Elon Musk Shills for Aviation Gin in Dueling Fan Ads
— Meet Kevin (@realMeetKevin) May 17, 2023
Deepfake versions of actor and Aviation Gin owner Ryan Reynolds and Telsa and Twitter CEO Elon Musk are promoting each other’s brands in a pair of dueling fan-made ads. Reynolds’ synthetic double extolling the virtues of Tesla prompted a response video of a digital Musk singing the praises of Aviation Gin, with both ads underlining how quickly hyperrealistic deepfake technology is spreading.
The initial ad seen above shows the synthetic Reynolds sitting in a white void and unmoving beyond his face, talk about how much he loves Tesla cars for their cost and self-driving ability, calling them “the coolest thing ever,” amid language not usually heard during car commercials. Kevin Paffrath, a financial advisor, former real estate agent, and current YouTuber under his “Meet Kevin” brand, created the video, which he made clear was not really using Reynolds and was made more as a fun project and possible pitch to Tesla for future marketing partnerships. It has since garnered more than 8 million views, and Musk even responded to Paffrath’s post with a succinct “nice.”
— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) May 17, 2023
The fact that Paffrath is not claiming it’s really Reynolds or trying to make money from the ad directly didn’t stop plenty of people online from urging Reynolds to sue him for making it seem like Reynolds had endorsed the vehicle. Reynolds had a perfectly apropos, if indirect, response, however. Marketing agency Maximum Effort, which Reynolds co-founded to help support his various business and advertising projects, produced their own deepfake ad, this time with Musk advocating for the Reynolds-owned Aviation Gin. And, of course, Reynolds tweeted “nice” in response.
— Ryan Reynolds (@VancityReynolds) May 18, 2023