October 24, 2023
In the nostalgic realm of Hawkins, Indiana, where the supernatural and the mundane collide, the Duffer Brothers’ Stranger Things has become a global phenomenon. Since its inception in 2016, the series has enchanted audiences with its compelling storyline and a cast of talented young actors. However, the passage of time has brought forth a unique challenge for the show’s producers: the rapid aging of its once-youthful stars.
As the first season of Stranger Things aired in 2016, the core cast, including Millie Bobby Brown, Finn Wolfhard, Gaten Matarazzo, and others, were mere adolescents, around 12 years old. Fast forward to 2024, and these talented actors are now approaching their twenties, presenting a stark contrast to their characters’ initial introduction to viewers.
The challenge becomes even more pressing considering the upcoming season five, set to pick up directly after the events of the fourth season. With the actors aging in real time and the entertainment industry grappling with an actor strike, the producers and crew are faced with the daunting task of ensuring continuity in the characters’ appearance.
Stranger Things producer Shawn Levy acknowledged the issue, stating, “We’ve already watched the cast of our show grow up in the public eye, and between 12 and 22, every human being changes profoundly.” Levy emphasized the team’s determination to overcome this challenge, employing the expertise of the hair, makeup, and wardrobe departments. The use of costumes, wigs, and makeup, coupled with the show’s ’80s setting, will aid in returning the young adult actors to their iconic Hawkins characters.
Levy reassured fans, stating, “We’re going to use all the tools available to us. And I know our cast is as eager to get back to work as the rest of us.” Indeed, the commitment of the cast and crew to maintaining the series’ integrity promises an engaging and visually consistent experience for viewers.
Amidst this challenge, fans can anticipate an epic finale for Stranger Things. According to Levy, season five is set to be a grand cinematic spectacle, rivaling the scale and depth of major blockbuster movies. The co-creators, the Duffer Brothers, have hinted at a central focus on the character of Will, played by Noah Schnapp. Ross Duffer revealed, “Will really takes center stage again in five,” indicating a profound emotional journey for the character as he comes into his own as a young man.
As fans eagerly await the next installment of the beloved series, the dedication of the creative team, coupled with the young cast’s talent and enthusiasm, ensures that Stranger Things will continue to captivate audiences, transcending the challenges posed by the passage of time and actor growth.