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Quirky short film starring robot “Gumdrop”

November 21, 2012

In this short film from feature director Kerry Conran, Gumdrop is a 27 year old Bulgarian robot auditioning for a role in a feature film. Along the way some clever CGI allows Gumdrop to show her skills dancing with Charlie Chaplin and Fred Astaire.

Gumdrop explores the genre of humanoid human-acting robots, and it’s a nice irony that the robot is both acting human and an actor. While very far from any robotic reality in the near future, films like this pose the questions of how we expect robots to relate to us.

Her visual appearance aside, she is the most non-robotic robot that I’ve ever seen realized on screen.  Her expressions, her naivete, her nervous laughter and chit chat—all of it is the very essence of a human If Conran’s name sounds familiar, that’s because he was the brains behind the 2004 feature, Sky Captain and the World of Tomorrow, a visually inventive dieselpunk action film that was spawned from Conran’s very own short film.  Ultimately, though, Sky Captain was a box office disappointment. []



Andra Keay
Core Team Member & Robotics Industry Futurist
Andra Keay is the Managing Director of Silicon Valley Robotics, founder of Women in Robotics and is a mentor, investor and advisor to startups, accelerators and think tanks, with a strong interest in commercializing socially positive robotics and AI.

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