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HomeFact CheckDeepfake Ad Of Akshay Kumar Promoting Mobile Game App Goes Viral

Deepfake Ad Of Akshay Kumar Promoting Mobile Game App Goes Viral

Authors

Kushel HM is a mechanical engineer-turned-journalist, who loves all things football, tennis and films. He was with the news desk at the Hindustan Times, Mumbai, before joining Newschecker.

Pankaj Menon is a fact-checker based out of Delhi who enjoys ‘digital sleuthing’ and calling out misinformation. He has completed his MA in International Relations from Madras University and has worked with organisations like NDTV, Times Now and Deccan Chronicle online in the past.

Claim
Ad, purportedly featuring Bollywood actor Akshay Kumar, promoting a mobile game app, saying that you can make easy money through betting.

Fact
No such endorsement, viral ad found to be a deepfake.

Several social media users are circulating a clip, purportedly showing Bollywood actor Akshay Kumar endorsing a mobile game app, Aviator, that promises easy money through betting. The archived versions of the tweets can be seen here and here.

Fact Check

Newschecker first ran a keyword search for “Akshay Kumar aviator”, which led us to multiple news reports, sharing the viral ad, stating that the actor has raised concerns after the deepfake video of him promoting a gaming application, Aviator, surfaced on the internet. According to the reports, sources close to the 56-year-old actor said that he was “deeply upset” and had informed his team to deal with the issue with all available legal options.

The reports can be seen here, here and here, stating that a cyber complaint against the social media handle and the company has been filed for creating and promoting the fake video.

We then ran a reverse image search of keyframes of the viral video, which led us to this Instagram reel, uploaded by Akshay Kumar on August 9, 2023, promoting his movie OMG 2.

A comparison of the viral video (left)  with cropped screengrabs (right)  of the Instagram reel suggests that it had been altered, especially considering Kumar’s t-shirt, hairstyle and the background.

We ran the video past Deepware, a community-driven open-source Deepfake detection tool, which deemed it “suspicious”, further confirming the viral video to be a deepfake.

Last month, Newschecker had debunked a slew of similar deepfake ads, impersonating Shah Rukh Khan, Kapil Dev and Sachin Tendulkar, to promote an online game that promises easy money.

Also Read: Did M K Stalin Say That He Doesn’t Mind Losing Elections If The Victory Depends on Hindu Votes?

Conclusion

Viral ad of Akshay Kumar promoting an online game is a deepfake.

Result: Altered Media

Sources
Times of India report, February 3, 2024
Instagram reel, Akshay Kumar, August 9, 2023
Deepware tool


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Authors

Kushel HM is a mechanical engineer-turned-journalist, who loves all things football, tennis and films. He was with the news desk at the Hindustan Times, Mumbai, before joining Newschecker.

Pankaj Menon is a fact-checker based out of Delhi who enjoys ‘digital sleuthing’ and calling out misinformation. He has completed his MA in International Relations from Madras University and has worked with organisations like NDTV, Times Now and Deccan Chronicle online in the past.

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