Really good deep fake of Tom Cruise

Actor Bill Hader is known for his impressions of famous people, a skill he used to good effect when he used to be a cast member of Saturday Night Live. In a recent TV interview he recounted meetings with Tom Cruise and Seth Rogan and did impressions of them. Someone took that video and whenever Hader did an impression, did a deep fake to make him actually look like the person he was impersonating.

The transitions are so smooth as to be uncanny. It is really well done and also deeply disturbing at the potential to dupe people.


  1. John Morales says

    Well, already photos are suspect — now video is too.

    A quantitative, not a qualitative advance.

  2. raym says

    It must be me… I have no idea what any of these named people look like, and I have watched the video several times, but as far as I can tell, there is no change at all in the interviewee’s face.

  3. says

    Raym, (not meaning this in an insulting way) I wonder if you have a degree of face blindness? Even not knowing who Bill Hader or Tom Cruise are, they don’t look that much alike beyond being white men with brown hair. The Seth Rogen one is harder to tell, but the switches from Hader to Cruise should be pretty obvious.

    I’m also impressed that you don’t know what Tom Cruise looks like. I don’t care about sports at all but I’m still able to recognize a number of athletes.

  4. Ridana says

    Deep fakes are going to destroy all credibility eventually. However if they were used only for good, like this hilarious mashup of Keanu Reeves and Forrest Gump (be sure to watch it full screen), I’d be totally on board. 😀

  5. raym says

    Tabby… no offence taken. However, spurred by your words, I played the clip again (and again, and again), but this time with my wife watching. She clearly saw the transformation to and from Tom Cruise, but try as I might, I simply cannot see it myself. This is fascinating, and explains why I often fail to recognise people I have met before, at least until I get to know them really well. So now I can add face-blind to colour-blind. And I’m also left-handed. And English.

    But where does this leave me with regard to deep-faked videos? Apparently, just where I’ve always been.

  6. Trickster Goddess says

    I know what the named people look like but I still had difficulty spotting the changes, and I’m still not sure I could really tell the difference. Maybe it’s partly because his hair and clothes don’t change.

    I’m a lot like raym in often not recognizing people I’ve met before. I sometimes joke to myself that all white people look alike to me (I’m white myself.)

  7. blf says

    I’m also with raym, whilst I detected (being aware it would happen) a mild difference at times, I could not and cannot say the face was, at times, definitely that of a different person. However, like others, I have no idea what either of the two (alleged real) individuals looks like.

    Presuming the people who way there is indeed one real person’s face morphing into that of another real person (and back) are correct — and I presume they are — this demonstration does suggest both a power and a limitation of the trickery: The power is a viewer “cannot detect” the fake face, the limitation is that if you the viewer doesn’t recognise the faked(? real? both?) face, the fakery “does not work” (albeit one might refer to the video in good faith).

    There’s also the problem I have no idea what either (alleged real) person’s voice sounds like.

    I’d probably be more convinced if, say, Ian McKellen was morphed into Ella Fitzgerald, voice as well as appearance and mannerisms. I’d probably be even more convinced if one or both faces were those of people I’ve met in person… and probably very very (and quite alarmingly!) convinced if one or both faces were of people I know very well (possibly, perhaps, one being myself?).

    None of this is to say or suggest I am not concerned by such deepfake videos. I am, and I do suspect they can / will confuse & confound too many people. This demo simply doesn’t work for me (and, obviously, some others) — despite (or perhaps, in part, because of?) being pre-warned.

  8. Mano Singham says


    I am not sure how similar the two characters have to be to make a good deep fake. But since it is not hard to find doppelgängers, determined tricksters would have no difficulty making such videos.

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