The producers and writers of Stranger Things ran into a good problem in putting together Season 2: they had too many ideas. Indeed, back in November executive producer/director Shawn Levy revealed that not only had the team been working on Stranger Things Season 2, but they’d also formulated some ideas for a potential Season 3. They’ve said the smash-hit Netflix show is a close-ended story, and will likely conclude after four or five seasons, but in a new interview with Mashable Levy revealed that when they started digging into Season 2 in earnest, they found they couldn’t fit all the story they wanted to tell into this one season:
“As the episodes were written by the Duffers, they realized that there was too much story for nine episodes. So it forced us to be judicious in which stories we tell this season. So one of the surprises was, not all of our grand ideas are going to be serviced in one season… If we had 40 ideas going into the season, 30 [we] are going to pick, and the rest go in the back of our head for, hopefully, future chapters.”
There’s no way Netflix doesn’t order Stranger Things Season 3, so that’s happening, but it’s interesting to hear that while the show keeps its seasons relatively short, the Duffers had an abundance of story for this second chapter. Indeed, the show is really set up like a novel or movie each season, and the limited episode order helps keep that story tight and contained.
But Levy also revealed what will likely come as good news to some folks: Season 2 will be very Will Byers-centric:
“When we cast the kids, we cast Noah Schnapp as Will Byers knowing that he was only in a small amount of Season 1 because he was missing. And we cast him because we knew that kid was special. Even if we weren’t going to call on his full reservoir of abilities in Season 1. Will Byers is very much at the center of Season 2. Noah steps up in the most staggering way. The Duffers and I, depending on who’s directing when, we keep sending texts to each other going, ‘holy shit, Noah is crushing it’ and we knew he had it in him, and it’s really now to get in that moment, and put him firmly in the thick of story.”
Season 2 also introduces fresh faces like Sean Astin and Power Rangers actor Dacre Montgomery, and Levy admits that as much as the show is plotted out beforehand, they found themselves shaping the characters around the performances:
“I will say that we have found the performances of our actors consistently inspiring, and bringing in people like Sean Astin; this new kid, Dacre Montgomery; this new kid, Sadie Sink… as we’ve seen the work they’re doing in episodes, the Duffers, recognizing strength, are making sure to service those characters even more over the course of the whole season. Perfect example, in Season 1, Steve Harrington was going to be a much more sparsely-used character. We saw what Joe Keery was doing, and we rewarded that with more story, more nuance, more dimension. The same thing is happening with a lot of the new characters this year.”
Is it October 31st yet?