Mr. Payback: An Interactive Movie

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Mr. Payback: An Interactive Movie
Directed by Bob Gale,
Charles Croughwell
Produced by Mark Franco II,
Jeremiah Samuels,
Holly Keenan II [1]
Written by Bob Gale
Starring Billy Warlock,
Leslie Easterbrook,
Christopher Lloyd,
Bruce McGill,
Holly Fields II [1]
Distributed by Interfilm Technologies
Sony New Technologies
Release date
Running time
approximately 20 to 30 minutes
Country United States
Language English
Box office $241,000[2]

Mr. Payback: An Interactive Movie is a 1995 American science-fiction/adventure short film written by Bob Gale and co-directed by Gale and Charles Croughwell.[1] Designed as an interactive movie, it comprises slightly over two hours of footage, approximately 20 minutes of which is seen in each viewing.[3] It requires the audience to vote for various directions the story will take, using a joystick attached to the armrests of their seats.[4] The film stars an android (Billy Warlock) who, in a number of possible storylines, takes action by humiliating or attacking people who deserve it. Gale and Christopher Lloyd, who had previously worked on the Back to the Future trilogy, worked on this film as well, and the music was scored by Michael Tavera, who had composed the music for the animated Back to the Future series.

The movie billed itself as "the world's first interactive movie," but it was predated by 1992's I'm Your Man.[5]


Critical reception[edit]

Mr. Payback received negative reviews from critics. Roger Ebert of the Chicago Sun Times gave the film a half-star out of a possible four, and called it "the kind of film where horrified parents might encourage the kids to shout at the screen, hoping the noise might drown out the flood of garbage."[6] Ty Burr of Entertainment Weekly tagged the film with an "F" grade.[4]


  1. ^ a b c "Mr. Payback (1995)". Yahoo! Movies. Retrieved 2009-07-21. 
  2. ^
  3. ^ "The Real Interactive Movie". Next Generation. Imagine Media (4): 26. April 1995. 
  4. ^ a b Burr, Ty (March 10, 1995). "Vengeance Is Yours". Entertainment Weekly. Retrieved 2009-07-21. 
  5. ^ Grimes, William. "When the Film Audience Controls the Plot". The New York Times. Retrieved 2016-12-14. 
  6. ^ Ebert, Roger. "Mr. Payback". Chicago Sun-Times. Retrieved 2009-07-21. 

External links[edit]