Horror stories and dark and stormy nights are a match made in spooky heaven, and now, veteran filmmaker Steven Spielberg is capitalizing on that concept with a quirky new project.
Spielberg is set to write a short-form horror series for upcoming streaming service Quibi that has one very strict requirement for how it can be watched: Viewers will only be able to access the show at night. Appropriately, its working title is "Spielberg's After Dark."
Quibi co-founder Jeffrey Katzenberg, who's collaborated with Spielberg for years through their DreamWorks production company, explained the idea during an appearance at the Banff World Media Festival in Canada over the weekend. Katzenberg told the crowd that Spielberg came up with nighttime concept himself, and originally requested that the series be available to watch only after midnight.
As a compromise, Quibi engineers created a clock that relies on users' phone GPS location, and counts down until sunset local time; when the clock disappears, the show can be watched until sunrise, at which point the content vanishes and the countdown begins again to the following night.
Requiring viewers to tune in during the scariest time of day sets the ideal tone for this project, according to Katzenberg.
"Steven Spielberg came in, and said, ‘I have a super scary story I want to do,'” Katzenberg said of the filmmaker's pitch for the series. “He’s writing it himself. He hasn’t [written anything in a while] so getting him to write something is fantastic.”
"After Dark" is currently slated to run for between 10 and 12 installments. Quibi will launch sometime in 2020.