The Duffer brothers and company are going back to the Upside Down (and Hawkins) sooner than we thought, as production of season 3 of Stranger Things will begin on Monday, April 23. Stranger Things debuted on Netflix in 2016 and was quickly renewed for a second season, premiering in 2017.
Set in the 1980s, in the fictional town of Hawkins, the first season follows the disappearance of a young boy, Will Byers, and the subsequent investigation, which uncovers a series of supernatural events. The second season deals with the aftermath of these events and the return of Will Byers, while also exploring the backstory of some characters (such as Eleven) and giving closure to other characters and plots. Fans have been eagerly waiting for details on season 3, and while there are no plot details yet, a filming date has now been revealed.
In an interview with Collider, producer and director Shawn Levy confirmed that filming of season 3 will begin on April, 23rd and that he will be back to direct episodes three and four, as he has done with the previous seasons. Levy also shared that the team has completed the table read from the season, which included the first four scripts – this as the Duffer brothers like to write the rest of the episodes as they shoot. Levy explained:
It is the same number of scripts as last year. The rest of them kind of get written as we shoot, as we edit, as we go. I’m once again directing the third and fourth episodes so that I can give the Duffers a breather, and send them back into the writing cave, so that they can buff out the rest of the season. That’s why I took on those episodes in Season One, and now the three of us are just a little too superstitious to mess with what’s worked so far. The prep beyond that, it’s really a similar juggling act where the Duffers, because they always understandably want to direct the kick-off episodes, they have to juggle their limited time between writing and re-writing and prepping as directors, all at the same time.
Joining Levy and the Duffers behind the camera in the previous seasons were Andrew Stanton and Rebecca Thomas, who directed season 2’s infamous episode 7, “The Lost Sister”. Stanton, director of various Pixar films such as Finding Nemo and WALL-E, directed episodes 5 and 6 (“Dig Dug” and “The Spy”) from season 2. But don’t expect to see his name on the list for season 3, as scheduling conflicts are keeping him from directing some of the planned eight episodes for the season.
As for the plans for season 4, Levy shared they “have a good sense of stuff that happens in Season 4” and that it is “definitely happening”, though season 5, while possible, remains “undecided”. The Duffers have previously stated that the series is likely to end with season 4 or even a 5th, and it’s unlikely they will go further than that. Plot details for season 3 remain unknown, but a few new names have been added to the cast, such as Maya Hawke, playing “alternative girl” Robin; Cary Elwes as Mayor Kline, and Jake Busey as a character known as Bruce. Making the jump to series regular is Priah Ferguson, who played Lucas’ sister, Erica, in season 2. The main group of kids (Eleven, Mike, Dustin, Lucas, and Will), their families, and Jim Hopper will all come back for the third season.
As previously mentioned, season 2 gave closure to most of the main plots of the series, making way for a somewhat fresh start on season 3 – though there are still many questions surrounding the Upside Down, its origin, and the chaos and creatures it can bring to our dimension. While it’s unlikely that the Duffers and company will share any plot details soon, we can only hope that once filming begins, we can know a bit more about the new characters and start piecing the season together.
Stranger Things season 3 premieres on Netflix sometime in 2019.