Don't Be Fooled: Despite The Viral TikTok, 'Curt Skelton' Is Very Much Real

August 26th, 2022 - 8:49 PM EDT by Philipp Kachalin

1 comment | Contact Newsroom

Curt Skelton on TikTok viral video hoax.

A viral TikTok claiming that the very person who made it is an elaborate AI project and a massive hoax nearly a year in the making got people questioning reality, but despite how convincing the video seems, the person in it is undoubtedly real and very talented.

On Thursday, TikToker Curt Skelton (@curt.skelton) made a shocking revelation that he is, in fact, nothing more than an elaborate fake character created using multiple AI-powered programs from DALL-E to DeepFaceLab.

In the video, Skelton transforms into a completely different person who then explains that everything Skelton is was carefully engineered to demonstrate the capabilities of modern AI. The TikTok currently sits at over 10.3 million views, and a Twitter reupload has over 4 million.


♬ Mr. Roboto – Live – Styx

- Will artificial intelligence replace the role of visual effects artists? It already has. I'm not re-
-al. Curt Skelton is a fake character I made using multiple AI programs.

In comments, some users seemed pretty convinced that they've been tricked and quite possibly bamboozled for nearly a year since Curt Skelton launched his TikTok account and started posting videos about VFX and My Chemical Romance. New comments have also been popping on Skelton's older videos as people went back to check for clues.

Well, if you're looking for the quick and definitive answer to whether Curt Skelton is actually real, here goes — Curt Skelton is real.

While Skelton's previous videos are full of visual shenanigans (the man is a VFX artist), the most obvious proof of Skelton's existence is his Instagram account, which is full of his younger pictures and, even more importantly, created in 2017, well before DALL-E and other software mentioned in the video were even released. Nobody is THIS high-effort unless you're Christian Bale in The Prestige.

And while the greatest trick Skelton ever pulled was convincing the world he didn't exist, his video goes to show that AI has advanced so much that we can easily believe it can perform amazing feats. And while Skelton wasn't a simulation, somebody may be — and we just don't know it yet.

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