Suggesting that it maybe hasn’t talked to (or judged the overall judgment of) the average American movie-goer of late, Fox sounds very excited to announce today that it’s moving forward with plans for films that allow the audience to control how they ultimately play out. Per Deadline, the news comes out of the studio’s presentation at CinemaCon this afternoon, with distribution head Chris Aronson announcing that Fox is partnering with game/film studio CtrlMovie to add audience interactivity to its upcoming Choose Your Own Adventure film.
CtrlMovie is best known at this point for Late Shift, a sort of live-action CYOA crime thriller it released on Steam and mobile last year. Before that, though, the company also toured the film at festivals, allowing audience members to vote as a group on which path hapless protagonist Matt would take through the details of a dangerous heist. Although it featured several optional scenes and minor plot deviations, Late Shift operated much like many “interactive movies” have over the years, presenting a fairly linear plot that only branches wildly at the end. (Contrast that with the much-hyped experimental interactive features of HBO’s app for Steven Soderbergh’s recent Mosaic, which allowed users to change the order and context of the show’s scenes, but not their actual outcomes.)
Fox has been working on the Choose Your Own Adventure movie—based on the popular series of kids’ books—since at least 2013. Going off of our memories of the books, though, they’re going to have to be pretty careful with which options they let viewers pick, lest America’s Dumb Children decide to immediately wander into a cave and get eaten by an angry dinosaur, five minutes after the opening credits roll.