“Have you ever had a dream that that, um, that you had, uh, that you had to, you could, you do, you wit, you wa, you could do so, you do you could, you want, you wanted him to do you so much you could do anything?”
A five-year-old boy wearing a red sweater takes about 18 seconds to try to replicate the dialogue of one of his favorite Disney characters but ends up stumbling over his words while trying to complete the sentence. This clip gets posted to YouTube, garnering over 76 million views. The clip gets remixed, copied, and memed. A decade later, Wavywebsurf’s YouTube channel discovers the identity of the child, Joseph Cirkiel. In an interview with Cirkiel, he repeats Hercules’ dialogue once again, this time getting it perfect.
Let’s run a quick analysis of facial emotions of Cirkiel now and then.
We can see the boy looking at the camera for an audition for HBO. He starts by saying “have you ever had a dream…” At the same time, his inner eyebrows raise and his eyes start to squint, displaying an uncomfortable expression. The imentiv AI technology detects this as anger.
As the clip continues, we see his expression flip between anger and neutrality. At the very last moment, his facial expression changes, with his eyebrows and eyes turning up.
The imentiv AI technology now detects the emotions of happiness and surprise.
When we analyze the new version of the interview, we see him start again with the same quote, “have you ever had a dream…” His facial expression 10 years later is completely different, with the imentiv AI technology detecting a neutral emotion due to his good eye contact and confident expression. This time around, he completes the quote in 20 seconds with no mistakes.
Once again, the final expression detected is happiness.
This is not just the story of Cirkiel’s speech, but also his emotions. He has gained confidence over the years, fighting against everyone who laughed at him for his stuttering.