Vudu new Family Play mode automatically skips sex, violence, profanity, and drug use in movies

Vudu is trying to establish itself as the most family-friendly video streaming service with several new features aimed at parents. The most interesting of them is called Family Play, and when activated, it lets you “skip past or mute strong scenes of sexuality, violence, substance abuse, and language.” Customers have the option of customizing the categories that Family Play filters, and the feature can be turned on and off at will including while watching something.

Over 500 titles support Family Play at launch, including Guardians of the Galaxy, The Dark Knight, Forrest Gump, The Bourne Identity, The Hunger Games, Spider-Man 3, The LEGO Movie, Gravity, Men In Black: International, and many more. The company says it plans to add more Family Play selections on a weekly basis. According to Variety, Vudu used a mix of human reviewers and algorithms to identify the scenes that should be passed over, and it stuck to PG and PG-13 films, since R-rated movies would probably contain a large number of sudden jumps.

Vudu worked with the studios to develop the Family Play feature, Verba said. “They understand we’re enabling the customer to make choices we’re not making choices for them.” Generally, the Vudu team picked titles with PG and PG-13 ratings that they thought would be the ones families want to watch together.

Additionally, Vudu says “through our partnership with Common Sense Media, the leading source of entertainment and technology recommendations for families, customers will now be able to gauge if a film or TV show is appropriate for the little ones in their homes. When browsing our library, customers will find detailed information on thousands of titles, including a parental review and the minimum age recommended by Common Sense Media as appropriate to watch the content, providing a trusted guide for families.”

A new Kids Mode, which also incorporates data from Common Sense Media, “lets viewers limit what kids can browse or view to only content appropriate to the child’s age.”

The new family-focused features apply to both paid (rented or purchased) content and Vudu’s ad-supported free TV shows and movies.

And on Sept. 27, Vudu will exclusively debut the first three episodes of Nickelodeon’s “Blue’s Clues & You” revival, ahead of the premiere on Nickelodeon in November.

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