Netflix boss Ted Sarandos believes AI is here to stay
(Credit: Daniel Benavides)

Netflix News

Netflix boss Ted Sarandos believes AI is here to stay

Netflix CEO, Ted Sarandos, has issued his thoughts on artificial intelligence and divulged his opinion on whether it will displace humans in the entertainment industry.

Over the last 12 months, the debate surrounding AI in the arts has been an all-encompassing cultural conversation. There are fears held by individuals who operate in music and cinema, who are worried they could potentially be made redundant due to the rise in technology, but Sarandos is confident that the feelings of dread are misplaced.

While artificial intelligence has yet to start creating television shows or movies, there is a strong possibility this could occur in the future. The threat was a major reason behind last year’s SAG-AFTRA strikes, which brought Hollywood to a temporary standstill.

Earlier this year, James Hawes, the director of Apple TV’s Slow Horses, warned that an AI-generated programme will be on the way soon, stating: “The best guess was three to five years. Someone will say, ‘Create a scene in an ER room where a doctor comes in and he’s having an affair with a woman, and they’re flirting, and someone is dying on the table,’ and [AI] will start to create it.”

Hawes isn’t the only figure in the film industry to share this perspective, but Sarandos doesn’t believe AI will ever surpass the human mind when it comes to storytelling, telling the New York Times, “I have more faith in humans than that. I really do. I don’t believe that an AI program is going to write a better screenplay than a great writer, or is going to replace a great performance, or that we won’t be able to tell the difference.”

While his previous comment offers hope for those working in the creative industries, Sarandos does believe AI will have a presence in the future of film, stating, “AI is not going to take your job. The person who uses AI well might take your job.”

Furthermore, the Netflix boss also described AI as a “natural kind of advancement of things that are happening in the creative space today”, suggesting the platform would have no qualms to use the technology if it would enhance the product.

On its current use in Hollywood, he added: “Writers, directors, editors will use AI as a tool to do their jobs better and to do things more efficiently and more effectively. And in the best case, to put things onscreen that would be impossible to do.”

A swathe of huge names in Hollywood have spoken out against the growing use of AI, including Nicolas Cage, who remarked: “AI is a nightmare to me. It’s inhumane. You can’t get more inhumane than artificial intelligence.”

Despite the mixed opinions on AI, if Sarandos is correct in his assertion, it will play a prominent role in the future of the movie industry. However, that doesn’t necessarily mean the technology will become more important than the humans using it.