Production on the fifth and final season of Stranger Things has been delayed, owing to the ongoing Hollywood writers’ strike. In a tweet, co-creators Matt and Ross Duffer confirmed that they stand in solidarity with the strike and hope that a fair deal is reached soon. The rules set by the Writers Guild of America state that all writer-producers are barred from participating in any writing or creative-based duties on film and television productions during the strike. It’s also refreshing to see Netflix respecting the creators’ wishes and delaying filming until further notice — a huge undertaking, given how popular the Stranger Things IP is. Meanwhile, on Disney’s side of the fence, Andor will resume production on season 2 without its primary writer.
“Duffers here. Writing does not stop when filming begins. While we’re excited to start production with our amazing cast and crew, it is not possible during this strike,” the tweet reads. “We hope a fair deal is reached soon so we can all get back to work. Until then — over and out.” Back in November, the creators revealed the title for episode 1, ‘The Crawl,’ with the chapter being set primarily in Hawkins, charting the lead characters’ investigation of the parallel world — the realm where demons like the Demogrogon lived in.
Stranger Things 5 was originally planned to begin filming this month, as per actor Noah Schnapp, who was revealed to have a massive part in this season. It is also worth mentioning that the Duffer Brothers have struck an overall partnership with Netflix for multiple Stranger Things projects, including an animated series and a stage play.
Duffers here. Writing does not stop when filming begins. While we’re excited to start production with our amazing cast and crew, it is not possible during this strike. We hope a fair deal is reached soon so we can all get back to work. Until then — over and out. #wgastrong
— stranger writers (@strangerwriters) May 6, 2023
As per Variety, Andor season 2 is among the few shows that will continue production amidst the ongoing strike, with executive producer Tony Gilroy not showing up on set or writing scripts. However, he will continue working on non-writing aspects such as picking a musical score and casting. Reports from last week confirmed that Amazon Studios was continuing production on The Lord of the Rings: the Rings of Power season 2 without its showrunners on set.
Despite 19 days of filming remaining on the LOTR spinoff show, the team feels a bit relaxed as showrunners J.D. Payne and Patrick McKay planned things in advance for a potential writers’ strike. Meanwhile, in the case of HBO’s House of the Dragon season 2, executive producer Ryan J. Condal is reportedly present on the UK set, albeit in a strictly non-writing capacity. Scripts for the season were completed long before.
Earlier this month, Netflix CEO Ted Sarandos confirmed that the streamer was better prepared than most studios, in case a writers’ strike did go through, which eventually did happen. The executive pointed at its large slate of upcoming movies and shows, noting that it would keep any disruptions from the strike to the minimum. Meanwhile, other studios had been stockpiling screenplays and greenlighting series renewals earlier than required.
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