Netflix is doubling the interactive content for children. The streaming service announced on Tuesday a new interactive animated show nicknamed "Battle Kitty" by Matt Layzell. The company has not yet shared a date for the premiere of the show.
"Netflix gave me the incredible opportunity to help change the way young people see themselves," said Layzell. "Like Kitty, an aspiring underdog with a great spirit of determination, I want children to feel small to realize instead that they can resist, have friends and continue to do incredible things."
The idea of "Battle Kitty" came from "The Adventures of Kitty & Orc", which Layzell had produced for his Instagram account. "Battle Kitty" will be his first run as a showrunner, and will also serve as the show's executive producer.
The announcement only comes a day after another interactive announcement: on Monday, Netflix announced "You vs. Wild" as its next interactive story for the adult and family audience. The show, which will arrive on Netflix on April 10th, will feature the Bear Grylls survival expert and will offer viewers the chance to find their own path through each of the eight episodes.
The company made announcements at its Lab Day, a two-day press event for journalists from around the world. During the event, executives also hinted at plans to develop other interactive shows for a variety of audiences, including perhaps romance and horror. The service also has at least one other interactive still untitled in the works.
Netflix has invested not only in interactive content, but also in the tools used to tell this type of branched narrative. For the production of "Black Mirror: Bandersnatch", the company has developed a tool called Branch Manager that helps keep all the wires together.
"It's a production tool that standardizes our workflow," said Dave Schlafman, Netflix interactive content design manager, during a Monday afternoon demonstration. "It allows them to design a flow."
Schlafman said the company is constantly working on adding new features to the branch manager, which can then lead to different artistic decisions. For example, for "Bandersnatch", Netflix has developed the possibility of adding up to 4 different choices. "The early days are still far away," he concluded.