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

14 November 2018, 10:52

Woodrow Whyte

By Woodrow Whyte

Production on Stranger Things 3 has officially finished and we've got all the latest news and rumours about the cast, storyline, theories and trailer announcements.

Now we've finally recovered from the last season, we're ready to start thinking about Stranger Things season three. The Stranger Things cast just finished filming season 3 and now we have to sit patiently at wait. Great.

The latest news? It's now been confirmed that the release date for the third season has been delayed and won't be arriving on our screens until Summer 2019. Speaking at the TCAs, Netflix’s VP for original content, Cindy Holland, explained 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.”

On the 2nd anniversary of the show's 2016 premiere date, a brand new FIRST LOOK has just 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!


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.

Netflix also dropped a teaser video showing some behind-the-scenes script read-throughs with the cast of Stranger Things 3 back in April too.


As for the rest of the news about the series?

Netflix has confirmed (April 18) two new characters and the actors that will play them. Cary Elwes has been cast as a guest performer in the role of “Mayor Kline". He is described as a "handsome, slick, and sleazy, Mayor Kline is your classic 80s politician -- more concerned with his own image than with the people of the small town he governs." Jake Busey has been cast as a guest performer in the role of “Bruce”. He's described as a journalist for the The Hawkins Post with questionable morals and a sick sense of humour.

- Netflix have now confirmed there will only be eight episodes instead of nine... and it will be set in the summer of 1985. One year later.

- Dad Steve will return. In fact, he will be getting a lot more screen time this season. Producer and director Shawn Levy told fans at a PaleyFest panel fans that Steve (Joe Keery) will have a bigger role in Season 3. "We'll definitely get to see some more of Steve Harrington in Season Three, and I'll just say we won't be abandoning the Dad Steve magic. I don't want to say much more, but I literally feel that we were walking along and we stumbled onto a gold mine with Dad Steve," Levy said.

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

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, hunni. There will be four.

How many episodes will be in Stranger Things season 3?

According to TVLineStranger Things season three will only have eight 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.

In an earlier interview with Glamour, executive producer Shawn Levy confirmed that the show will have 8 or 9 episodes and that the season as a whole is already planned out. "We're there. It'll be an eight- or nine-episode season. The number of episodes will be dictated by the amount of story that excites us. We now know what is going to happen in season three to every character." Now it's just a case a finalising all the smaller details and they'll be ready to film.

When is Stranger Things season 3 released?

Netflix’s VP for original content, Cindy Holland, confirmed that the third season won't drop on Netflix until mid-2019. “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 delayed release 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. 

Despite the push back, season three sounds like it's going to be bigger and better than before. “I think it’s going to be a fantastic season,” teased Holland at TCA. “It’s gonna be worth the wait.”

Levy confirmed the show will return in 2019. "If we could make it [return] faster, then we would," he explained. "But we're going to make it well. We're going to do it right." Previously, David Harbour. In an interview with Variety, has previously explained why the show might not return until 2019. "I mean, one of the things that’s annoying for fans is that it takes us a long time to do them,” he said. “Like, you probably won’t get [Season 3] until sometime in 2019. But also part of the thing is, like any good thing, they need time. And those guys work so hard. I mean, they just sit in their apartment and write for 12, 14 hours a day.” Fair enough.

Stranger Things/Netflix

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

Some things are guaranteed to happen in a season of Stranger Things: Demogorgons will be running amok round Hawkins, Eleven will be eating Eggo Waffles and Joyce Byers will have a nervous breakdown because inevitably something terrible will happen to Will. However, season three might be a little different.

"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? WHAT IS HAPPENING?

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? Oh, and of course... catch up on all the new relationships that were formed at the Hawkins High Snow Ball. 

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. 

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! 

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.

The first cast member to be confirmed is the sassiest character from the latest series, Lucas' sister Erica Sinclair, played by 11-year-old Priah Ferguson. 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.

Maya Thurman Hawke has also been added to the cast as a brand new character called Robin, who has been described as an alternative girl. Interesting... the Lost Sister, anyone?

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. 

His spot on the show was hanging in the balance for a few months after the UK-born Heaton was reportedly detained at Los Angeles’ LAX Airport after allegedly being found to be in possession of cocaine. He wasn't present at the Golden Globes or SAG Awards earlier this year presumably due to visa issues and instead represented the show at the National Television Awards in the UK with girlfriend Natalia Dyer. But according to costume designer Kim Wilcox, it's been confirmed that Heaton is back and ready to film. 

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. 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?

Next year... although we might get a teaser clip a bit sooner if we all ask nicely enough.


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