Published: Tue, October 02, 2018
Life&Culture | By Mildred Hamilton

Netflix considering interactive films and TV shows

Netflix considering interactive films and TV shows

The Black Mirror Season 5 news along with the interactive Netflix news comes to us via Bloomberg.

Interactive TV is slowly beginning to become feasible and more mainstream, as HBO released its own interactive show, Mosaic, that was directed by Steven Soderbergh and was later released as a standalone app.

Netflix has played around with interactive storytelling in animated kids shows, such as the streamer's Puss in Boots where the viewer can choose whether the feline fights a god or a tree, for example.

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Black Mirror has always walked on the cutting edge of suspense, brandishing its signature style of technology-centric horror stories.

Despite the same number of seasons, Black Mirror has twice as many Netflix episodes (12) as Channel 4 episodes (six).

This news comes from Bloomberg, who have reported a single episode of the upcoming fifth series will be interactive. Now we have our first news of what that will involve, because an upcoming episode of Charlie Brooker's Black Mirror will let viewers choose what happens. It made Netflix one of the largest media companies to test the waters of interactive TV, a format that has held promise for years as television migrated to internet-based streaming but nevertheless remains niche.

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Past year we learned Netflix was in the midst of testing out a choose-your-own-adventure format. At the very least, it's not like Black Mirror needs a gimmick to stay popular, so I'm curious to see what the show does with it.

Two of the projects are adaptations of video games, though Netflix has no plans to start releasing video games - contrary to recent reports.

Of all the shows to go the choose-your-own-adventure route first, it makes sense for Black Mirror to give it a shot, giving viewers a chance to decide how a story pans out using Netflix's technology. "You have the ability to choose your own response from Netflix: This or this". And if the Black Mirror experiment works, this could be the start of a whole new world of programming for the ever-growing streaming service.

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