Netflix is facing a $25 million lawsuit over last month’s interactive movie Black Mirror: Bandersnatch, with children’s book publisher Chooseco, the company behind the Choose Your Own Adventure books, filing against the streaming giant for breaching its trademark.
“Chooseco and Netflix engaged in extensive negotiations that were ongoing for a number of years, but Netflix did not receive a license,” states the complaint (via THR). “On at least one occasion before the release of Bandersnatch, Chooseco sent a written cease and desist request to Netflix asking Netflix to stop using the Choose Your Own Adventure mark in connection with its marketing efforts for another television program.”
According to Chooseco’s complaint, audiences have been confused about Bandersnatch’s association with Choose Your Own Adventure, which the publisher says has caused harm to its reputation by being linked to Black Mirror.
It’s worth pointing out that while the film does include a mention of a Choose Your Own Adventure book, Netflix never actually used any variation of the phrase during the marketing for Bandersnatch, so it remains to be seen whether the courts will find any merit in the complaint.
In this 80s-set, sometimes morally-compromising adventure, you alone are in charge of what happens next. The journeys you go on are a direct result of your decisions.
There are choices to be made, challenges to overcome, dangers to encounter and, as always in life (and Black Mirror), consequences to be had. Choosing wisely could lead to triumph while taking the wrong path could end in disaster — but who’s to say what’s “right” and “wrong,” anyway? And fret not because once one experience comes to a close, you can — and should! — go back and make a new choice, alter the path of your story and maybe even change its outcome.