More Than Half of U.S. Consumers Prefer Films Made by Humans Versus AI-Generated Content 

One-third of consumers hope there is full transparency when AI is used to generate content in the future   

The majority of U.S. consumers prefer feature film content that is created by humans over content generated by artificial intelligence (AI), despite the increasing use of AI in film production and content creation. This finding was revealed in a new survey by global management consultancy Baringa, which surveyed 5,035 consumers globally – including 1,008 U.S. respondents – to get a pulse on consumer sentiment towards AI-generated content.

According to the survey, 52% of U.S. consumers over the age of 16 would rather watch a 7/10 rated movie created by humans than a 9/10 rated movie created entirely by AI. Gen Z, more than other generations, prefer human-produced movies, with 57% of U.S. respondents born between 1998 and 2008 saying they’d rather their films are made by humans, not AI.

“Nearly every industry is making advancements in the use of AI, but the pace of innovation has accelerated within studios and content creators. We just recently saw headlines around the first fully AI-generated film,” said Eddie Monteiro, partner at Baringa. “It’s important for studios and film makers to understand how consumers feel about these changes and the potential impacts. Transparency will be crucial if consumers are to feel more comfortable with how AI is being used to help create their television shows and movies.”

While American moviegoers have yet to see a feature length movie fully created by AI, only 11% of U.S. survey respondents said they would be happy with AI-only films and television shows. Over one-third (35%) of respondents, including 42% of Baby Boomers and 39% of Gen X, said they will always want movies and television shows to be created by humans.

Other key findings from the survey include:

  •        When asked what parameters, if any, they would need to be in place to consume entirely AI-generated content, 31% of U.S. respondents said they would never be happy to consume content created entirely by AI under any circumstances.
  •        81% of U.S. consumers said they would want to know if the content they’re consuming was entirely or partly created by AI. While most consumers across generations agreed on the need for transparency in the use of AI, respondents aged 16-24 and 55+ showed a stronger preference. 
  •        U.S. consumers also prefer literature and music to be created by humans. 57% of respondents said they would rather wait years to read a book written by an author than read a book of the same quality written by AI in a faster timeframe, and 42% of consumers said they would always want music to be composed by humans.

The use of AI in television and film has been a major point of contention for many professionals in the entertainment industry. The Screen Actors Guild-American Federation of Television and Radio Artists and the Writers Guild of America went on strike last year to address several key issues and changes in the industry, including the growing use of AI by studios. Both unions reached separate agreements with the Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers, which included some guardrails for the use of AI across the industry.

Baringa’s survey shows that while one-third of Americans believe AI-generated content will never be of better quality than human-generated content, one-quarter expect all content to be produced by AI in the distant future. Additionally, roughly one-third of Americans think that creative people will eventually adapt to new technologies, incorporating AI into their work.

“Consumers today have a stronger preference for human-generated content, but that is likely to shift as AI becomes more sophisticated and consumers grow more willing to embrace it,” Monteiro continued. “Creative industries, whether film and television or gaming, shouldn’t be limited to creating content that’s solely AI or all-human. Just like other technologies before it, AI is another tool that can enhance the creative process and transform how content is made and consumed. As technology continues to evolve, the companies that want longevity understand the importance of investing in the best people while still investing in AI.”

Baringa’s AI survey was conducted between March 3, 2024 and March 22, 2024.



The research was conducted by independent market research consultancy Censuswide. The survey was conducted online with 5,035 nationally representative consumers in the UK, US, Australia, Germany, and the Netherlands, between March 3, 2024 – March 22, 2024. Censuswide abides by and employs members of the Market Research Society, which is based on the ESOMAR principles, and are members of the British Polling Council.

About Baringa

Baringa is a global management consultancy operating across sectors including energy, financial services, consumer products and services and government.

We set out to build the world’s most trusted consulting firm – creating lasting impact for clients and pioneering a positive, people-first way of working. We work with everyone from FTSE 100 names to bright new start-ups, in every sector. We have hubs in Europe, the US, Asia and Australia, and we can work all around the world – from a wind farm in Wyoming to a boardroom in Berlin. Find us wherever there’s a challenge to be tackled and an impact to be made. 

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