Rashmika Mandanna responds to deepfake video, says it was ‘extremely scary’

The altered video of Rashmika Mandanna was shared by a X user named Abhishek who also posted the original video which was used to create the deepfake.
Rashmika Mandanna
Rashmika Mandanna
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Actor Rashmika Mandanna reacted to a deepfake video of her doing rounds on social media and has called it “extremely scary.” The actor said that was hurt to talk about the video and how this issue needs to be urgently addressed before anymore people are affected by it. The real video was uploaded by an NRI woman where she was entering an elevator wearing a bodysuit and the woman’s face was replaced with Rashmika’s face.

Rashmika said, “I feel really hurt to share this and have to talk about the deepfake video of me being spread online. Something like this is honestly extremely scary not only for me, but also for each one of us who today is vulnerable to so much harm because of how technology is being misused.  Today, as a woman and as an actor, I am thankful for my family, friends and well wishers who are my protection and support system. But if this happened to me when I was in school or college, I genuinely can’t imagine how I could ever tackle this. We need to address this as a community and with urgency before more of us are affected by such identity theft.”

The deepfake video was criticised by actors and politicians, who called for legal action. The altered video of Rashmika was shared by a X user named Abhishek who also posted the original video which was used to create the deepfake. He said, “There is an urgent need for a legal and regulatory framework to deal with deepfake in India. You might have seen this viral video of actress Rashmika Mandanna on Instagram. But wait, this is a deepfake video of Zara Patel (sic).” 

Abhishek also pointed out that Zara’s face was visible for a second in the deepfake video before Rashmika’s face appeared. He said, “ From a deepfake POV [point of view], the viral video is perfect enough for ordinary social media users to fall for it. But if you watch the video carefully, you can see at (0:01) that when Rashmika (deepfake) was entering the lift, suddenly her face changed from the other girl to Rashmika.” 

Meanwhile, veteran Bollywood actor Amitabh Bachchan and Union Minister for Electronics and Technology Rajeev Chandrashekar, both called for legal action against the perpetrators. 

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