In the Black Mirror universe, Bandersnatch is the name of a Choose Your Own Adventure book that proved to be so complex that it drove its author to murder. The film sees Whitehead’s character, 21-year-old Stefan, choose to adapt the book into a video game, ultimately losing his own grasp on reality.
Taking this element into the 90 minute feature itself, Bandersnatch comes with a choose-your-own-adventure element that allows viewers to drive the plot. Meaning not all of us are watching the same film.
While watching Bandersnatch, you’re asked to make decisions for Stefan with the click of of a button. These choices range from trivial decisions such as what cereal Stefan should eat for breakfast or what music he should listen to on the bus to potentially life-altering picks that’ll change the course of ending, depending on what you pick.
If you don’t make a choice, Netflix makes it for you.
There are reportedly five different endings to Bandersnatch and viewers can rush through it in a short 40 minute stint while other options can make the film last for up to two hours. It’s reported that 312 minutes of footage were shot for the film.
Co-creator Annabel Jones told the BBC: “One of the most challenging things about making this has been the crafting of the world and the various branches, and also limiting the endless, infinite potential offshoots and different stories you can make.”
Carla Engelbrecht, Netflix’s director of product innovation, added: “There are literally millions of permutations of the story, and your decisions matter.”
You can watch the trailer below.
Don't do it. pic.twitter.com/dZUeyxW50x
— Black Mirror (@blackmirror) December 27, 2018
Meanwhile, a series of Black Mirror spin-off novels has been postponed indefinitely. Creator Charlie Brooker had previously announced a three-book adaptation of the series, which was set to include all-new tales from the Black Mirror universe.
However, earlier this year, Brooker said he had “sort of messed up a bit” by announcing the books. “It was slightly tricky,” he said. “[The novels] ended up demanding slightly more involvement than myself and Annabel [Jones, showrunner] had time for. I’m not sure when or if that [book series] will appear. Probably not.”