When Stranger Things returns for its third season, it will transport us back to 1985, the year of Back to the Future, a-Ha's "Take on Me," and a lot more of Priah Ferguson's Erica Sinclair. Lucas's younger sister made a big splash with audiences last season thanks to a beautiful combination of humor and sass. The Duffers took notice and will be giving her a juicier role in the next eight episodes, which are expected to arrive sometime next year.
While chatting with The Hollywood Reporter about Season 3, cast member Noah Schnapp (Will Byers) said that Ferguson will play a central role to the main plot. We knew back in March that Ferguson was being bumped from a recurring character to a series regular, but Schnapp verified this and hinted a little more about her involvement with the main players in Hawkins, Indiana that we've grown to love over the last two seasons.
"She definitely has a bigger part this season," he said while trying his hardest to tiptoe around spoiler territory. "And she kinda has her own storyline with someone from the cast."
Who could it be? Will she could be getting between Lucas (Caleb McLaughlin) and his budding romance with Max (Sadie Sink)? Or will Lucas try and pawn her off to Dustin (Gaten Matarazzo) who's got no one in his live since Dart ate his cat and ran away?
When talk turned to Will's possession by the Shadow Monster in Season 2, Schnapp admitted that he studied films like The Exorcist to most accurately portray someone who has been taken over by a dark and otherworldy entity. Even so, he considered it a unique challenge because demonic possessions aren't exactly commonplace.
"It's very hard to kinda research about possessions and stuff because it's not a thing that happens in real life, so I had to just look at movies and think about it myself," he said. "It was definitely really hard." For the scene where he had to start convulsing, he used a real-world example of his friend suffering a seizure, which he witnessed in person, trying his best to emulate it on screen.
Despite no definite release date for the next eight episodes of Stranger Things, Schnapp confirmed that they will be set in the summertime, rather than the winter and fall of the last two seasons. This gives the Duffers ample room to make as many Back to the Future references as they want, since the iconic film came out in theaters that July. You know what else was released that summer? View to a Kill, The Black Cauldron, The Goonies, Rambo: First Blood Part II, Weird Science, Explorers, and Fright Night. Simply put, 1985 is an excellent time period with which to make endless callbacks.
The summer setting was mainly confirmed last month by the casting of Francesa Reale, who will play Heather, a Hawkins Community Pool lifeguard that gets caught up in the dark goings-on of the little town. Along with Reale, Cary Elwes and Jake Busey are also becoming regular members of the cast as the sleazy Hawkins mayor and a determined investigative reporter, respectively.