'Stranger Things' Season 3: Release Date, Cast, Trailers And Everything You Need To Know

2 January 2019, 11:04 | Updated: 2 January 2019, 14:09

Woodrow Whyte

By Woodrow Whyte

All the latest information about the cast, spoilers, episode titles, storyline, theories and trailers for Stranger Things season 3.

Now we've finally recovered from the absolutely wild ending of Stranger Things season two, it's time to start preparing ourselves for what's about to come in Stranger Things season 3. The cast have just finished filming the third season and now we have to sit patiently and wait until it's ready to be unleashed upon the world. 

It's now been confirmed that the release date for season 3 is July 4 2019. The Netflix premiere date was pushed back in 2018, with Netflix’s VP for original content, Cindy Holland, explaining the reason for the delay: “It’s a handcrafted show. The Duffer brothers and Shawn Levy have worked really hard, and they understand the stakes are high. They want to deliver something bigger and better than what they did last year. And so they really want to take the time to get it right.”

The latest news on Stranger Things 3?

The episode titles for season 3 have just been released and they sound VERY OMINOUS already. In a tweet shared by the official Stranger Things account, the episode titles are as follows:

  • Episode 1: 'Suzie, Do You Copy?'
  • Episode 2: 'The Mall Rats'
  • Episode 3: 'The Case Of The Missing Lifeguard'
  • Episode 4: 'The Sauna Test'
  • Episode 5: 'The Source'
  • Episode 6: 'The Birthday'
  • Episode 7: 'The Bite'
  • Episode 8: 'The Battle Of Starcourt'


On the 2nd anniversary of the show's 2016 premiere date, a brand new FIRST LOOK dropped online and it looks like everyone's favourite dad Steve Harrington (and newcomer Robin, played by Maya Hawke) will have found themselves a summer job... working at an Ice Cream parlour in the newly build Starcourt Mall!

 

Will the gang make regular trips to visit their father Steve at work on the weekends? Where are Jonathan and Nancy working over the summer? Will the next season feature a terrifying show down with the Mind Flayer in Starcourt Mall with Steve on the offence with an ice cream scooper?! So many questions, so little time.

Phew! Can't wait until that 2019 drop? Quench your Stranger Things thirst and catch up with all the latest about the making of the third season below. 

Has Stranger Things season 3 been confirmed?

Yes. Netflix has officially confirmed the third season of Stranger Things. It will likely not be the final season of the show, despite rumours following Millie Bobby Brown's farewell Instagram story.  

The Duffer Brothers, the show’s creators, have ~confirmed~ there will be four series. “We’re thinking it will be a four-season thing and then out,” said Ross in an interview with Vulture. By that point the kids will be approaching college age. “We just have to keep adjusting the story,” said Matt. “Though I don’t know if we can justify something bad happening to them once a year.” “They’re going to have to get the fuck out of this town!” says Ross.

Is Stranger Things 3 the last season?

No, it's not. A fourth season has been confirmed by Shawn Levy, but has not been renewed by Netflix... yet.

How many episodes will be in Stranger Things season 3?

It's now been confirmed, via the teaser trailer for the episode titles, that Stranger Things season 3 will have 8 episodes, which is one less than Stranger Things 2 and the same amount as season one. Some fans aren't that bothered about it though because if you ignore the controversial "Lost Sister" episode from season two, it's almost as if we have eight episodes anyway.

When is Stranger Things season 3 released?

Stranger Things season 3 will be released on Netflix on Thursday July 4 2019. 

The summer drop date was also teased in the brand new teaser "commercial" for Hawkins' new Starcourt Mall. In the video, which features Joe Keery as Steve Harrington and new cast member Maya Hawke as Robin, it's stated that the new setting won't arrive until “next summer” which would be the summer of 2019, confirming that - like season 2 with Halloween - this season will be running in 'real time' with its release date.

Stranger Things/Netflix

What’s going to happen in Stranger Things season 3?

First things first, it looks like the twice tormented Will Byers is finally going to have a nice restful season. "We're going to give Will a break," Shawn Levy explained. "We’re not going to put Will through hell for a third season in a row. He’ll be dealing with stuff, but he won’t be at rock bottom the way we forced the amazing Noah Schnapp to play.” THANK GOD. Poor chap needs a holiday or something.

Mike and Eleven, and Max and Lucas will be coupled up at the start of the season too. "Mike and Eleven and are going strong, so that's a relationship that continues, and same with Mad Max and Lucas. But again, they're like 13- or 14-year-old kids, so what does romance mean at that stage of life? It can never be simple and stable relationships and there's fun to that instability," Shawn Levy said.

There's also good news for fans of father-son duo Steve and Dustin. The two characters struck up an unlikely friendship in the second season and it would seem the shows creators are keen to explore their relationship further in season three. "In season two, it was all very cute and there was a funny factor to it because it was unexpected", says Levy, "but now that it is expected, I want to see them connect more and be more familiar with each other. I want them to have a connection like they’ve really had a connection for a year—like they’re brothers."

But don't expect it to all sunshine and rainbows over Hawkins. The end of season two wrapped up a little TOO nicely for our liking to be honest. The threat from the Upside Down seems to have been contained... for now. The gate in the lab has been closed but as we saw right at the end of the season, that giant monster in the sky is still at large on the other side. 

There's also the small matter of the rest of the lab experiments. After Eleven, played by Millie Bobby Brown, ditched Eight to return to Hawkins, where did she go? How many more test subjects will we get to meet in the future? Do they all have different powers?

In other news, we'll probably get to see how Eleven (or Jane, should we say) takes to her life in Hawkins. Will she go to school? How many more words will she learn? 

Erica Sinclair also sounds like she's going to be pivotal to the plot in the third season. It's been reported by Variety that Erica, played by Priah Ferguson who has been upped to a recurring role in every episode, and she's bringing an army of friends with her who get sent on a wild mission to save Hawkins from a dangerous new threat." YES QUEEN ERICA! 

Will any characters die in Stranger Things 3?

Fans have been speculating that one of the kids might be killed off at the end of season 3. Speculation started when Millie posted an emotional farewell message after wrapping season 3, leading many to suspect that Eleven gets killed off. (This is completely unconfirmed, of course...)

One fan theory that has been getting a lot of attention lately is that Mike, played by Finn Wolfhard, will be killed off. Considering Mike is central to the whole show, and the seasons so far have put an emphasis on the protecting the lives of the children at all cost, we suspect this is complete BS. If you're an adult living in Hawkins, however, you might not be so safe. 


What year will Stranger Things 3 be set in?

On the red carpet at PaleyFest, executive producer Shawn Levy revealed that the third season would take place one year after the second season, during the summer of 1985 - and Back To The Future will be a HUGE reference point.
 
The reason Stranger Things 2 had a time jump to a year later from the first season was surprisingly simple: the child actors started to look older. So as the kids creep up in years, their characters have to keep up the pace. Ross Duffer explained that Stranger Things 3 will have to time jump again to keep up with the real ages of the actors.

It will have to be somewhat of a time gap, because the kids are, I mean, they already look so much older", he explained to Yahoo. "No matter what we want to do, I remember when we were originally talking about Season 2, we wanted to just start it in Christmas and just go from there, but then we realised the kids are just too old, so we had to jump forward. Even the latest trailer, we had to loop a line with Caleb [McLaughlin]. He sounds like a man now. It creeps me out. He’s going to be driving to set next year.

Which cast members will return for Stranger Things season 3?

Well, considering that all your favourites managed to escape the terrifying shadow monster unscathed (kind of), you can expect the core gang to return but here's what we know so far.

Millie Bobby Brown, Finn Wolfhard, Caleb McLaughlin, Gaten Matarazzo, Noah Schnapp and Sadie Sink are all returning. Charlie Heaton, Natalia Dyer and Joe Keery are all set to return too. Winona Ryder and David Harbour will be back as Joyce Byers and Chief Hopper. 

It was also revealed that Priah Ferguson, who plays Lucas' little sister Erica will be back in an even bigger role. Ross Duffer said in an interview with Yahoo: “There will definitely be more Erica in season 3. That is the fun thing about the show — you discover stuff as you’re filming. We were able to integrate more of her in, but not as much you want because the story [was] already going. ‘We got to use more Erica,’ that was one of the first things we said in the writers’ room.”

Kali, also known as Eight, has also been confirmed to return by the Duffer brothers. Her story will be explored even more in season three. “It feels weird to me that we wouldn't solve [her] storyline. I would say chances are very high she comes back,” said Matt Duffer in an interview with the Hollywood Reporter.
 

Will Charlie Heaton return to Stranger Things as Jonathan Byers?

By the sounds of things, yes, Heaton will be back as Will's older brother Jonathan. Following the reports that Heaton was detained at Los Angeles’ LAX Airport after allegedly being found to be in possession of cocaine, many were worried that his role on the show would be cut due to visa issues but it was later confirmed by costume designer Kim Wilcox, that Heaton is back. 

Speaking at the Costume Designers' Guild, Wilcox said of Heaton: "I think he's a good man and I think he's made some great decisions in his life and maybe this was just a time where something slipped. He's a fine actor and... he is very professional and an incredibly generous human being, so I don't see why they wouldn't invite him back."

Stranger Things/Netflix

Will there be any new characters in Stranger Things season 3?

Four new characters will be making their way to Hawkins, Indiana for the third season. The new characters are: 

Mayor Larry Kline. Described as a "classic, 80’s style slick politician, pathetic and driven only by his own interests. He will be played by He will be played by Cary Elwes who has starred in various film and TV shows such as 'The Billionaires Boys Club, Days Of Thunder, Robin Hood: Men In Tights and The X-Files. 

Bruce. "A morally compromised news reporter in his 50s, outwardly sexist, overweight and bedraggled." He will be played by Jake Busey, who is best known for his work in Contact, Enemy of the State and Starship Troopers.

Patricia Brown. “Patricia” seems to be filing the role of the sweet, neighbourhood elder who spends a lot of time tending to her garden and offering her advice to the neighbourhood kids. 

Robin - described as an alternative girl working a mundane day job who uncovers a dark secret in Hawkins. She will be played by Maya Thurman-Hawke.

Have they started filming Stranger Things 3 yet?

Yes. In fact, they've just finished filming. Production was slated to begin in mid April with principal photography starting soon after. When we spoke to Noah and Caleb on the PopBuzz Podcast, they revealed it took 9 months to film the second season, so it's likely that the third season, depending on the amount of episodes, will continue filming well into summer 2018. 

When will the Stranger Things season 3 trailer drop?

Hopefully, a new trailer will drop at some point in the next few months but nothing has been released yet. So far, we've seen a teaser trailer about Steve Harrington and the Star Court Mall, there's been a reveal about the episode titles and on New Year's Eve, Netflix dropped a release date announcement with various hidden messages. 

 

What do you think will happen in season three? Head to our Facebook or Twitter to let us know your theories!