The projects will exist under a new unit dedicated to interactive programming and live specials, according to a YouTube spokesperson. The series being developed will primarily be driven by interactivity. The company will also integrate some product features into both its scripted and unscripted YouTube Originals. The company intends to announce the first of these projects soon, according to the spokesperson.
YouTube has experimented with interactive advertising in the past. This next step marks its first foray into interactive narrative content, which would theoretically make it a direct competitor to high-end interactive programming like Bandersnatch from Netflix.
The news comes just months after The Hollywood Reporter reported that YouTube was scaling back on original series in general. YouTube was supposed to start scaling back in 2020, according to The Hollywood Reporter, as a means of “serious budget reduction.” It’s unclear how many interactive programs or live specials YouTube is gearing up to invest in.