It’s official: a Stranger Things spin-off is heading to Netflix.
Stranger Things creators Matt and Ross Duffer revealed during this Monday’s episode of the Happy Sad Confused podcast that they are working on a Stranger Things spin-off with Netflix. The news was confirmed by the streaming giant on Wednesday in a series of tweets detailing the Duffer Brothers’ upcoming projects under their newly formed Upside Down Pictures.
A live-action Stranger Things spin-off series based on an original idea by The Duffer Brothers.
— Netflix (@netflix) July 6, 2022
What will the Stranger Things spin-off be about?
The Duffer Brothers are keeping the premise of the spin-off under wraps, but they did say that it won’t be similar to Stranger Things.
“It is 1000 percent different from [Stranger Things]. It is not following [any of the main characters],” the duo said. “I’ve read these rumors that there’s gonna be an Eleven (Millie Bobby Brown) spinoff, that there’s gonna be a Steve (Joe Keery) and Dustin (Gaten Matarazzo) spinoff, or that it’s another number. That’s not interesting to me because we’ve done all that. We’ve spent I don’t know how many hours exploring all of that. So it’s very different.”
As to how the spin-off will connect to the original series, the Duffer Brothers said: “It shares a connection with Stranger Things and the most connective tissue is the storytelling sensibility of it. There is a story that connects to Stranger Things.”
In May, when the spin-off is not yet official, the Duffer Brothers wrote in an emailed interview with Variety that they “think everyone — including Netflix — will be surprised when they hear the concept” for the spinoff “because it’s very, very different.”
However, much to their disbelief, one of the original cast members of Stranger Things figured out what the spinoff will be about. “Somehow Finn Wolfhard — who is one crazy smart kid — correctly guessed what it was going to be about. But aside from Finn, no one else knows!” the siblings said at the time.
Will the original cast appear in the Stranger Things spin-off?
While the Duffer Brothers said the Stranger Things spin-off will not center on any of the original characters, Wolfhard, who plays Mike Wheeler, told Digital Spy last May that he isn’t ruling out an appearance in any future Stranger Things spin-off. “I think if it was in 10 years or something like that, and there was a movie or a limited series, I think that’d be kind of cool,” the actor said.
Wolfhard’s co-star Charlie Heaton agreed, noting that he couldn’t really picture himself joining another storyline in the same universe just yet. “It’d be kind of weird to have a spinoff [now], you know?” said Heaton, who portrays Jonathan Byers.
Who will helm the Stranger Things spin-off?
The Duffer Brothers are working on a number of other projects, so it’s not surprising that they are looking for a person that will run the Stranger Things spinoff.
“Hopefully we find that right person to pass the baton to while we go on to do new stuff,” the siblings said during their appearance in the Happy Sad Confused podcast.
Matt also added, “Even the idea of Ross and I, say, doing a pilot and leaving it, it just feels silly to me. You really need to be there from the beginning to end. I think we need to find a partner to help us with that.”
As revealed by Deadline, the Duffer Brothers ― under their Upside Down Pictures ― are working on a live-action series adaptation of Death Note; an original series from creators Jeffrey Addiss and Will Matthews; and a series adaptation of Stephen King and Peter Straub‘s 1984 novel The Talisman.
In addition to the fifth and final season of Stranger Things and its sequel, the siblings are also working on a new stage play set within the world and mythology of Stranger Things. Prolific UK-based stage producer Sonia Friedman, as well as Stephen Daldry and Netflix, are producing the project.
When will the Stranger Things spin-off come out?
The Stranger Things spin-off doesn’t have a release date yet, as the project is still in the early stage of development. The Duffer Brothers said that they will begin working on the spinoff after the fifth and final season of Stranger Things.
“There’s a version of it developing in parallel [to season 5], but they would never shoot it parallel,” Ross said in an interview with Variety in June. “I think actually we’re going to start delving into that soon as we’re winding down and finishing these visual effects, Matt and I are going to start getting into it.”
Matt, for his part, explained why they have yet to deep dive into the works surrounding the spin-off. “The reason we haven’t done anything is just because you don’t want to be doing it for the wrong reasons, and it was just like, ‘Is this something I would want to make regardless of it being related to Stranger Things or not?’ And definitely,” he said. “Even if we took the Stranger Things title off of it, I’m so, so excited about it. It’s going to be different than what anyone is expecting, including Netflix.”