AI-Generated Film “M.A.D” Wins Audience Choice Award at Global AI Film Marathon

A collaboration between Willmontain Films and CreativeFitting, the animated sci-fi short screened at the Shanghai International Film Festival

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5:55 PM HKT, Thu June 20, 2024 1 mins read

Created by Willmountain Film in collaboration with CreativeFitting, three-minute animated short M.A.D tells a tale of nuclear war, based on acclaimed Chinese sci-fi writer He Xi’s work Sea of Wars. While that itself would be cause enough for interest, the film is actually also AI-generated. Last Friday, June 14th, the film won Bilibili’s “Audience Choice” Award at Shanghai Film’s “Global AI Film Marathon Competition.” Along with five other award-winning films from the competition, M.A.D was screened at the 26th Shanghai International Film Festival (SIFF) on the same day.


MAD Poster

Image via Willmountain Films.


The seeds for the collaboration were planted when Jud Willmont, founder of Willmountain Films and writer and director of M.A.D, met the CreativeFitting team at a short film seminar. They quickly established a connection and leveraged each other’s strengths in scriptwriting and AI-generated content (AIGC) technology, completing M.A.D within three weeks. Willmont uncovered the underlying tensions in He Xi’s original story, delving into the complexities of human morality within a narrative of resource scarcity, violence, and interstellar war. Meanwhile, the CreativeFitting team utilized their latest breakthrough generative AI video model, Reel Diffusion, to animate the film.


Zhu Jiang, founder and CEO of CreativeFitting, remarked that Reel Diffusion enabled them to focus more on character expression, thereby enhancing the storyline’s core as conveyed through consistent mise-en-scène and dialogue written by Willmont. With extensive experience in AI-generated short series streaming on Douyin, CreativeFitting stated that creating for a horizontal screen felt more akin to traditional filmmaking, allowing for more nuanced expression of emotion. Ultimately, the team decided to use human voice actors for the film to maintain this emotionality.



Created by an international cast and crew over a limited time frame, the success of M.A.D underscores the potential of AIGC films, highlighting the new levels of emotional depth achievable through AI models. Though there are some concerns about AI video models potentially replacing aspects of the film industry, for the time being at least, AI-generated films still require real people to step onstage to accept awards!


Banner image via Willmountain Films.

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