Last month, Netflix touted that more than 45 million accounts watched at least 70 percent of the Sandra Bullock-led film “Bird Box,” an eye-opening figure that represented its best viewership for any film (according to the very little, carefully-curated viewership stats Netflix has made available).
That led TheWrap to ask “Black Mirror” creator Charlie Brooker and his co-showrunner Annabel Jones if they were hoping that Netflix would do the same for “Bandersnatch,” the choose-your-own-adventure style “Black Mirror” film, given the streamer’s famous resistance to revealing ratings.
“Only if it’s more than ‘Bird Box,'” Brooker joked with TheWrap. “If it’s one less than ‘Bird Box,’ I hope they never tell anyone.”
All joking aside, Brooker seemed very happy that working for Netflix means he doesn’t have to worry about terms like “overnight ratings” or “advertiser-preferred adults 18 to 49 demographic.”
“I find it quite liberating that they don’t tell us numbers, or they don’t publish numbers,” Brooker explained, decrying how many shows, especially on broadcast television, are judged solely by their ratings. “It’s something that’s sort of fairly irrelevant in the grand scheme of things. I think its quite good when you’re making things to not really worry about that aspect.”
“Bandersnatch” doesn’t have a set run-time, since by its very nature it is designed to keep viewers watching (or “playing”) for as long as possible. That alone makes it difficult for Netflix to compare it to “Bird Box” or, really, anything else. And the project itself is Netflix’s very first foray into interactive entertainment aimed at adults.
But while Brooker isn’t losing any sleep over this, he would be more than OK if we find out “Bandersnatch” was a huge, mega-hit.
“If it turns out that literally everyone on the planet has watched it 100 times, I hope they scream that number very loudly to everyone’s letter box,” Brooker says.
And what would the two do if they found out that, yes, more people did watch “Bandersnatch” than “Bird Box?” For starters, they both know exactly who they would call.
“I’m gonna phone Sandra Bullock,” Jones said, jokingly, before Brooker answered in a bit more pointed fashion: “I hope they just tell Sandra Bullock.”