The Backlash Is Real For ‘Civil War’ After A24 Used Wonky, AI-Generated Posters To Promote The Alex Garland Movie

Alex Garland‘s Civil War, the movie that shows California and Texas fighting together and even rattled Wagner Moura while filming, fared even better than anticipated at the box office last weekend with $25+ million in ticket sales. Some unscheduled Jesse Plemons certainly didn’t hurt the film’s prospects, but will some new AI-generated posters mute the enthusiasm? Perhaps.

The intentionally incendiary A24 indie flick could have long legs, but some of those prospective ticket sales might have fallen by the wayside after the Uncut Gems and Minari studio dropped these posters on their Instagram account:

Several complaints quickly surfaced. There’s the matter of these scenes not appearing in the movie, which might seem like a quibble. The use of a giant swan, however, seems bizarre particularly jarring in an overall “off” set of images, and users pointed out some geographical inaccuracies from what could be botched AI prompts. Given the response to Late Night With The Devil‘s recent tangle with AI-generated images and the fact that A24 is a powerhouse for creators, this certainly feels like an unexpected move. Sure, this could have simply been an attempt at commentary that missed, but the response from filmgoers is not great and includes the following:

– “lol!! thanks for this. i was on the fence about seeing this in theaters and now i’m not going anymore.”

– “For a company that seemingly values artistry, using AI generated works for advertising is a real bummer.”

– “Why is a gunboat hunting a swan in Echo Park Lake? These AI images aren’t in the movie.”

– “I would have thought a company like a24 would not touch the ai plagiarism machine in a million years. Disappointing to say the least.”

– “Fact: Marina City Towers are not separated by the Chicago River.”

– “Hire real artists, this is ridiculous.”

And Hollywood Reporter points out what is perhaps the most bizarro-world reason that these images feel strange:

Ironically enough, before Civil War, Garland was perhaps best known for his 2014 directorial debut, Ex Machina, a film that warned about the dangers of AI.

Civil War, which does not contain a giant AI swan, is currently in theaters.