Stranger Things season 3 release date, cast, trailer, script, and everything else we know so far

Poor, poor Hawkins. That town really can’t catch a break in Stranger Things season 3. First Will Byers goes missing, then Barb, and then its farmland gets corrupted by some disgusting black goo. Oh, and it happens to be existing right beside some hellish parallel dimension called the Upside Down. And it’s home to the dangerous but well-intentioned Eleven and her equally tenacious foster father Jim Hopper. With all those factors bubbling in the same Indiana pot, even more bad things are bound to happen in Stranger Things season 3 and I bet you a whole plate of Eggos that they’re going to top the events of Stranger Things season 2. Here’s everything we know about it so far.

Fast facts:

Stranger Things season 3 release date: TBC 2019
Showrunners: Ross Duffer, Matt Duffer, Shawn Levy
Cast: David Harbour, Winona Ryder, Millie Bobby Brown, Finn Wolfhard, Caleb McLaughlin, Gaten Matarazzo, Sadie Sink, Dacre Montgomery, Maya Thurman Hawke

New video shows off Hawkins’ mall

The perms. The stonewash dreams. The physical shops for buying CDs and books… this latest video from Stranger Things takes us back to the ‘80s, otherwise known as they heyday of the mall. Steve has got himself a job at the local ice cream parlour along with the new alt-girl played by Maya Thurman, and he doesn’t exactly look chuffed about it. There’s no sign of Eleven or her chums in the crowds, but with the first two series largely focused on the Hawkins local shops, having the third season centered around a mall is correlates with the idea that that ‘80s are slowly progressing into the ‘90s. Plus imagine being trapped in a mall with those Upside Down creatures baying outside...

Eleven’s costume has been spotted in set photos

Recent set photos have spotted Eleven’s latest costume: a very comfy-looking pair of trousers and some well-worn sneakers. But have a look at her wrist - Eleven is still wearing the hair tie given to her by Hopper. It used to belong to his daughter Sarah and yes, we do happen to have a tear in our eye right now. The telepath also has some pretty sturdy glasses on, so either she’s got some deteriorating eyesight (join the club, Jane), or that’s Hopper’s attempt at disguising her so no one in Hawkins recognises his adopted daughter. Somehow I doubt the smartphone is part of Millie Bobby Brown’s costume for Stranger Things season 3, however. 

Stranger Things season 3 is going to be set in summer

As the real world swelters under the hot summer sun, you’ll want to imprint the sensation on your memory so you can fondly remember it when Stranger Things season 3 airs. During an interview with The Hollywood Reporter, Noah Schnapp revealed that our next outing to Hawkins won’t be in the dead of winter like in Stranger Things season 2, but is instead taking place in summer. The heat is due to affect the storyline as well, as Schnapp says the warmth means “you kind of get to see a different version of everyone”. Whether that means we’ll see Hopper in a Hawaiian-print shirt or Eleven sporting some awesome Ray-Bans I’m not sure, but considering the Upside Down seems to perfectly complement the dark, cold winters, dipping into it in the middle of bright summer days could be a tricky contrast to pull off. 

Dark Horse’s Stranger Things comic could answer a lot of hanging questions about the Upside Down

If you’ve always had questions about just how you survive in the Upside Down, the new Stranger Things comic from Dark Horse could be just what you’ve been looking for. Described as  an opportunity to explore the mysterious world of Hawkins, Indiana”, the first series is going to show what Will Byers went through in the eerie alternate dimension. We haven’t really seen what he had to do to cling to life in the Upside Down as Stranger Things season 1 only showed glimpses of Will fleeing and hiding from the Demogorgon, so this comic should clear up a lot of questions any fans have. It could also shine a light on just what the Upside Down really is, which will no doubt be a continuing theme in Stranger Things season 3. One fan theory even proposes that the Upside Down is a living being...You’ll have to wait for the four-part miniseries to come out in September 26, 2018 to find out what it takes to survive in there. 

Stranger Things season 3 production has officially begun

Finally, at long last, season 3 has begun production. What that means is that on April 20 the cast sat down to read through the script for the beginning of Stranger Things season 3. Oh, how we wish we could have been a fly on the wall during that session...although that’s not likely to happen anytime soon, you can always give the video above a watch to see the cast members arrive at the session in stylish black and white. It’s nigh impossible to scavenge any hints about what’s in store from the video alone, as the only thing we get a glimpse of - besides the faces of the cast, of course - is the cover page for season 3. Curses!

Stranger Things season 3 release date is probably 2019

The Duffer Brothers’ brainchild is one of the best Netflix TV shows around, so don’t expect them to go and rush out season 3. According to David Harbour, you can look forward to the Stranger Things season 3 release date being “sometime in 2019”. That doesn’t mean that the Duffer Brothers are taking any time off, though - Harbour goes on to say that “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”. After spending so long obsessing over the Stranger Things script - and rightly so - hopefully that means season 3 is going to do something new with the Hawkins kids and the ever-present threat of the Upside Down. Part of the duo’s work involves writing in at least one brand new character that we know for certain is going to be appearing in Hawkins, and speaking of...

Stranger Things season 3 cast has already expanded

Hawkins is a sizeable town, so it shouldn’t really be surprising that the Stranger Things season 3 cast is going to be growing. While the core cast are coming back, you can also expect to see Maya Thurman-Hawke (as in the daughter of Uma Thurman) as a new alt-girl character according to Variety, who’s bored with her day job and presumably seeks some thrills - which she’ll definitely get seeing as she’s due to uncover a “secret” hidden somewhere in Hawkins. 

Sassmaster Priah Ferguson will also have a more substantial role in season 3 after appearing as Lucas’ younger sister Erica in the previous season. Erica obviously has quite the inquisitive mind and isn’t scared of searching through Lucas’ room (He-Man and Barbie are in love, after all…) so perhaps she’ll stumble upon something that refers to Eleven’s powers or the Upside Down. 

We’ve seen the kids run, walk, and cycle through Hawkins, but haven’t yet witnessed them splashing around in a pool. Somehow swimming is going to play a part in Stranger Things season 3, as Francesca Reale has been cast as Hawkins lifeguard Heather. Apparently she’s going to be intrinsic to season 3’s plot, but we’re not sure why - or how - at the moment. 

Last season the new additions to Stranger Things included Billy, Max, and Superman Bob Newby (I’m still not over his death), but this time around you can expect some more core grown-up characters to make their debut. The Hashtag Show revealed that they have an anonymous source who says there’s at least three more characters on the way: two of them are Mayor Larry Kline, a 40-60ish year old greasy 80’s politician who’s just out for himself, and Bruce, a sexist rotund news reporter who’s in his 50s and doesn’t exactly make his appearance his top priority (he sounds like a bit of a slob). Lastly there’s Patricia Brown, the neighbourhood grandma who’s in her 70s and loves a bit of gardening. She’ll be dispensing grandmotherly advice to the Hawkins kids. 

There’s no say on whether Dr Owens (Paul Reiser) is returning for season 3, but after he seemed to switch allegiances to Hopper and Eleven, having a mole in the Hawkins Laboratory can’t be a bad thing. Likewise with Eleven’s adoptee older sister Kali: Linnea Berthelsen isn’t sure whether the illusionist will be making a comeback. Our Stranger Things season 3 theories has a suspicion that she’d make a great villain, mind you...

Stranger Things season 3 trailer isn’t here...yet

No, you haven’t missed it - the Stranger Things season 3 trailer isn’t here yet but you can bet that when it does we’ll probably have something to say about it. When it does appear expect it to have a Steve and Dustin scene featured in it in some way, as Shawn Levy has already told Glamour that he wants “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. He’s never had that, so I feel like Steve is definitely someone in that sense who could be that person to him”. The relationship between the two is clearly important to season 3 so some indicator of that in the trailer wouldn’t go amiss. 

Stranger Things season 3 script will have at least 8 episodes

Judging from what the Duffer Brothers have said so far about Stranger Things season 3 script, it’s going to be a doozy. For now it looks like it’s going to be “an eight- or nine- episode season”, according to Shawn Levy when he spoke to Glamour, also mentioning that “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”. Well, that doesn’t sound ominous at all. 

Unsurprisingly, the Mind Flayer isn’t done with Hawkins yet. Shawn Levy told Variety that it is “still lurking up there out there in the Upside Down”, and continues to be “determined to find a way to achieve his goals”. As it seems to have considerable influence over the Upside Down, prepare for some new monsters to make an appearance as Levy revealed that “the [demi] dogs didn’t get it done in season two, so he’s going to have some new strategies”. I dread to think what new horrors the Mind Flayer will dream up.

Something that’s certainly going to be happening to the majority of the characters is something everyone on this planet is due to go through at some point: puberty. Speaking to Entertainment Weekly, Matt Duffer said that “we have to deal with it because our real-life actors are going through it… I think that’s exciting because it forces the show to evolve and become something different every year. It’s going to test their friendships. Obviously, like Lucas and Max are together, but really, when you’re that age, how long do relationships last? They usually last about two weeks if you’re lucky. I think that’s going to be fun to explore”. Uh oh. Now I’m sad because it sounds like Max and Lucas’ relationship isn’t going to last a particularly long time. 

Other relationships are going to be going through some tough patches too, as David Harbour talked to Insider about the significance of Hopper giving his blue bracelet (his core memento of his dead daughter Sarah) to Eleven. “I don't want to to get too into that because that's something we may talk about sometime in season three… It's something we'll delve more into in terms of Jim's daughter and him confronting this Eleven relationship and what that means ... there's more to be revealed there”. Going from being a single, disinterested Sheriff into a father again is sure to dredge up a lot of conflicting emotions for Hawkins’ main advocate of coffee and contemplation. Along with the revelation that Hopper’s daughter died in Hawkins hospital - which could mean that during her treatment she came into contact with staff from Hawkins lab - it looks like Hopper is due to have some particularly interesting storylines in season 3. 

Stranger Things season 3 filming is underway

The knowledge that somewhere Stranger Things season 3 filming has already begun is a tantalising prospect. Don’t act like it’s not. David Harbour spoke to Collider about when cameras were due to start rolling about the latest escapades in Stranger Things, saying to Collider that “it’s supposed to be March or April, but I don’t have confirmation”. 

When filming does start, bear in mind that the kids are going to be going through puberty so a much larger time jump than the first to second season is almost definitely on the cards. Ross Duffer told Yahoo that there “will have to be somewhat of a time gap, because the kids are, I mean, they already look so much older”. One of the casting calls is for an ‘80’s’ politician, so perhaps Hawkins is going to be appearing on our screens in sometime near the end of the decade in a nod to the early 90’s. Yes please