Chooseco, publisher of the children’s’ “Choose Your Own Adventure” book series, is suing Netflix for using the phrase in Bandersnatch. The film, a spinoff of the popular TV series, allows for the user to make choices that determine the ending.
The trademark has been owned by Chooseco, LLC since the ‘80s, when the books first became popular. It was one of the most popular children’s series in the ‘80s and ‘90s. There are more than 180 titles in the series and Chooseco sold more than 265 million copies of the books.
The company claims they negotiated with Netflix in 2016 about the phrase being used for the series. However, they say Netflix never got the license to use it.
“Netflix has no license or authorization to use Chooseco’s trademark and, upon information and belief, used the mark willfully and intentionally to capitalize on viewers’ nostalgia for the original book series,” the lawsuit states. “The film’s dark and, at times, disturbing content dilutes the goodwill for and positive associations with Chooseco’s mark and tarnishes its products.”
In the film, Stefan (Fionn Whitehead) explained to his dad that the video game Bandersnatch is based on a book series which he described as “choose your own adventure.”
Chooseco filed the lawsuit Friday in Vermont federal court.
Black Mirror: Bandersnatch premiered on Dec. 28. Previously, many people believed that there would just be one “choose your own adventure” episode in the series. However, Netflix developed an entire spinoff film instead.
Last month, it was revealed that Black Mirror fans are now able to play one of the games from Bandersnatch called Nohzdyve.