- Stranger Things Producer Shawn Levy confirms that Season 5 will not use aging AI technology on the younger actors, but will rely on makeup and costumes.
- Season 5 has been written but not yet filmed due to the SAG-AFTRA strikes, raising questions about handling the cast’s aging appearance.
- Levy expresses confidence in the show’s makeup and costume department to make the cast younger, with an emphasis on vivid characters and talented casting.
Stranger Things Producer Shawn Levy confirms that Season 5 will not use artificial intelligence aging technology on its younger cast. While season 5 of the hit Netflix series has been written, filming has yet to begin due to ongoing SAG-AFTRA strikes. The delays to Season 5 have led to questions about how the appearance of the younger actors will be handled in the new season.
By speaking with Deadline, Levy clarified comments he made earlier about the challenge of aging the show’s child characters. Admitting surprise at how the quote was positioned as indicating he would use aging AI technology for possible flashbacks, the producer promised there wouldn’t be any in Stranger Things season 5, expressing confidence in the show’s makeup and costume department to rejuvenate their actors. Read Levy’s comments below:
No, I was a little surprised that a sentence I said on this subject traveled so much. At the end of the day, we know what we’re doing on this show. Our cast is awesome. And these characters created by the Duffers are so alive. I don’t worry about everyone getting back together and bringing them to life.
Not using AI aging technology is the best decision for Stranger Things 5
THE Stranger Things actors looking significantly older since their last appearance is not a new problem. This has been the case since season 3, released almost two years after season 2, and again in season 4, released three years later. Although the aging was noticeable for much of the younger cast, it did not detract from the quality of those respective seasons and had no negative impact on viewership or reception. Stranger Things is largely a coming-of-age story, and it works well to see the actors age alongside their characters.
While there are benefits to using aging AI technology, as recent projects such as The Mandalorian And Indiana Jones and the Dial of Destiny, aging characters can also be distracting. Making Eleven, Will, Dustin, and the other characters younger would be more distracting than making them look older than they did in Season 4. Along with makeup and costumes, there are other ways to make the characters look younger.
Stranger Things Star Finn Wolfhard has already experienced a bit of aging for his return to Computer science: chapter twoan effect which was met with mixed reviews from critics and audiences.
As a story with many supernatural elements, the series could also use an in-universe explanation for why certain characters seem older, especially now that the Upside Down broke through Hawkins and in the human world. The effects of regular exposure to the Upside Down could possibly be used to explain why some characters appear much older, although the series probably won’t go that route. As Levy says, the talented cast and crew will Stranger Things season 5 is great no matter how much time passes.