Choose Your Own Adventure publisher sues Netflix over Black Mirror: Bandersnatch

Netflix Hit with Trademark Lawsuit over 'Black Mirror Bandersnatch'

Netflix Hit with Trademark Lawsuit over 'Black Mirror Bandersnatch'

In Bandersnatch, a young programmer is adapting a famous and mysterious choose your own adventure novel into a video game, which sends him down a plight of morality and outcome as he digs deeper and deeper into the meaning of free will.

Referencing Netflix pursuing a licence in 2016, the complaint stated: "Chooseco and Netflix engaged in extensive negotiations that were ongoing for a number of years, but Netflix did not receive a licence".

Indeed, the phrase "choose your own adventure" has been nearly inextricably linked to Bandersnatch, either through Netflix's own efforts or the mark's ubiquity as established by Chooseco.

Chooseco is seeking at least $25 million in damages, and has issued a cease-and-desist request against Netflix regarding its use of the "Choose Your Own Adventure" mark in another one of its programs.

Chooseco claims that Netflix made a concerted to connect the audience with the nostalgia of the 80s and 90s books.

The Vermont-based Chooseco LLC has filed a complaint claiming that Netflix is using an association with the brand to increase awareness of Bandersnatch.

The company had already partnered with Twentieth Century Fox for an upcoming series of interactive films based on the books, which have sold over 265m copies worldwide.

The controversy seems to primarily stem from the dark nature of Black Mirror's subject matter. The film gets bloody and violent, which is part of the reason Chooseco has chosen to sue, claiming the disturbing nature is inappropriate for young readers and that the adult imagery "tarnishes" the Choose Your Own Adventure brand.

"We would prefer not to resort to litigation, but given the damage that we will suffer as a result of the use of our mark we've been left with no other option", Chooseco co-founder and publisher Shannon Gilligan said in a press release.

Netflix declined to comment to the Daily Dot.

Chooseco printed over 620,000 copies of its Choose Your Own Adventure series for distribution across the nation past year, according to the lawsuit.

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