Black Mirror is counting down 2018 with a new offering of the sci-fi anthology.
The Netflix series, created by Charlie Brooker, will launch a stand-alone film, titled Black Mirror: Bandersnatch, on Dec. 28. The streaming giant officially revealed the premiere date when it released a trailer only one day ahead of its debut.
Set in the 1980s, Bandersnatch — which is being billed as a Black Mirror event — follows Stefan (Dunkirk‘s Fionn Whitehead), a young programmer who has hopes of creating a computer game inspired by an adventure novel given to him as a child.
The trailer opens with Stefan talking about the strange and vivid dreams he has been having. “When it’s a concept piece, a bit of madness is what you need,” Stefan is told before he flushes his medicine and begins work on the game. To the tune of Frankie Goes to Hollywood’s “Relax,” the trippy trailer shows bits of Stefan’s journey as he immerses himself in the project. “Your fate has been dictated — you’re not in control,” sums up a woman on his television screen.
Will Poulter, Craig Parkinson, Alice Lowe and Asim Chaudhry round out the cast of Black Mirror: Bandersnatch, which is helmed by returning Black Mirror director David Slade.
Though previous episodes of Black Mirror have been feature film in length (season three’s “Hated in the Nation” had a runtime of 89 minutes), Bandersnatch is the first official stand-alone movie. All of the episodes in the series are indeed separate stories, but they exist within the Black Mirror universe thanks to Easter eggs for discerning viewers.
News of Bandersnatch‘s arrival was first leaked earlier this month when Netflix tweeted and then quickly deleted a post about December programming dates from one of the streamer’s official accounts.
Bandersnatch will be releasing as Black Mirror viewers await a premiere date for the forthcoming fifth season, which is set to arrive sometime in 2019. Though the fourth season of the Emmy-winning series released Dec. 29, Brooker and his partner, executive producer Annabel Jones, have not typically stuck to a yearly schedule when delivering seasons.
After launching Black Mirror on the U.K.’s Channel 4 in 2011, the pair brought their techno-paranoia horror to Netflix for its critically acclaimed third season. Seasons three and four each launched with six episodes, including the Emmy-winning “San Junipero” (season three) and “USS Callister” (season four). “It puts us just on the cusp of a nervous breakdown — so it’s working!” Jones has previously told The Hollywood Reporter of the six-episode model. “I think even a number seven would just do us in.” Brooker added.
Netflix did not announce an episode count when renewing Black Mirror for season five earlier this year. As THR has reported, Black Mirror is working on a choose-your-own-adventure story with Netflix. Though confirmed details so far are scarce, the interactive narrative would make Black Mirror the streamer’s first live-action offering in the genre.