The emergence of fake videos have become a sort of test run and public service announcement, heightening public awareness of deepfake technology. The video starts like dozens of others on YouTube — with former “Saturday Night Live” star Bill Hader offering up a celebrity impression, this time of Arnold Schwarzenegger.
The impression is spot-on, but that’s not why the video has almost 6 million views in the last month. About ten seconds into the video, Hader’s face slowly, almost imperceptibly starts to morph into Schwarzenegger’s face. The full transformation takes about six seconds, but the changes are so subtle that it seems like magic. Suddenly, it looks like Schwarzenegger, albeit a skinnier version, is doing an impression of himself.