How New Netflix Series ‘Captive’ Differs from ‘Making a Murderer’ (Exclusive)

“It has more in common with something like ‘Black Mirror,’ because each film tells a very distinct story,” producer Simon Chinn tells TheWrap


Netflix’s latest series has a lot of similarities to last year’s sensation, “Making a Murderer,” but the show’s creator says “Captive” is actually more similar to a different hit on the streaming service.

Two-time Oscar-winning producer Simon Chinn told TheWrap that his new show is unique because each episode is essentially a mini-film and they don’t need to be watched in any particular order, as opposed to “Making a Murderer” which needs to be consumed chronologically.

“To that extent, it has more in common with something like ‘Black Mirror,’ because each film tells a very distinct story. We have eight difference directors and they all bring their own vision to the film, but there is a very strong overarching identity to the series,” Chinn said.

“Captive” is an eight-part docu-series that explores hostage situations with a gritty, true crime feel, reconstructing some of history’s most complex and high-stakes negotiations using vintage footage as victims recount their terrifying ordeals.

The series, which premieres on Netflix Friday — roughly the same time that that “Making a Murderer” dropped last year — examines the most challenging hostage situations of our time. While Chinn obviously hopes the show is binge-watched over the holidays like “Making a Murderer” was, he thinks “Captive” lives on the border of the true crime genre.

“In a sense, it sort of broadly fits into that [true crime] category, but I think it’s a broad category. Some of the films absolutely fit within the genre because they are about crimes, pure and simple,” Chinn said. “There are other films in the series that are less about crime, per se… we think of it as more of a physiological thriller than anything.”

He continued: “Look, we’re going out in the ‘Making a Murder’ slot [December], so clearly that’s a little bit of, a kind of play, but I’d slightly caution against being compared to ‘Making a Murder’ very directly, it isn’t a, sort of, limited series. It isn’t a single narrative but [Captive] has plenty going for it.”

Chinn, who has produced hits including “Searching for Sugar Man” and “Man on a Wire,” has always been fascinated with hostage situations as a “dramatic premise” because of the “moral complexity” of hostage negotiations.

Each episode looks at a wide range of situations from the viewpoint of everyone involved, including the victims and their families back home, the experienced negotiators, business leaders, government officials and sometimes the kidnappers themselves.

“I think people will watch one film and want to watch more,” Chinn said.