HBO has renewed Insecure and Ballers.
David Alan Grier was great on the Howard Stern Wrap Up Show yesterday. I'm going to miss The Carmichael Show, where he also shines.
Speaking of which, "Amber Stevens West didn't waste much time booking her next role after the cancellation of The Carmichael Show. Speaking with reporters Tuesday at the Television Critics Association summer press tour, the actress revealed she got a call asking her to come in to read for a part on the new Fox comedy Ghosted an hour after she learned that her NBC sitcom would not be returning for a fourth season. 'It was a lot of emotions that day,' she said with a laugh. 'I was sad to let go of one thing, but I already knew what Ghosted was. I was familiar with the pilot from the pilot season.' Premiering this fall, the series centers on a cynical skeptic (The Office's Craig Robinson) and a genius 'true believer' in the paranormal (Scott) who are recruited by The Bureau Underground to look into the rampant 'unexplained' activity in Los Angeles — all while uncovering a larger mystery that could threaten the existence of the human race."
"For the premiere of Carpool Karaoke: The Series, Will Smith joined James Corden for a ride belting classics like Gettin’ Jiggy With It and Boom! Shake the Room. The first six minutes of the show that will exclusively stream on Apple Music were made available ahead of the premiere, and it shows Smith and Corden signing hits along with a marching band or harmonizing to I Believe I Can Fly in a helicopter flying over Los Angeles."
Fox may be reviving King of the Hill.
Sam Lerner, who has recurred since Season 2 of The Goldbergs, has been promoted to series regular for season 5. Lerner plays Geoff Schwartz, one of Barry’s best friends.
"Disney is cutting out the middleman. The company announced Tuesday that it will be removing its films from Netflix and launching its own Disney-branded streaming service in 2019. The new platform will become the exclusive home in the U.S. for subscription streaming of Disney and Pixar movies, beginning with the 2019 theatrical slate, which includes Toy Story 4, the sequel to Frozen, and the live-action Lion King remake. It will also feature library titles as well as original movies, TV shows, and short-form content. In addition, Disney will be rolling out an ESPN-branded sports streaming service in early 2018. It will feature approximately 10,000 live regional, national, and international games and events a year, including content from Major League Baseball, the National Hockey League, Major League Soccer, Grand Slam tennis, and college sports. Disney is acquiring a majority stake in the digital media company BAMTech to power the streaming products."
Minka Kelly has joined the cast of Bull.
Tim Meadows and Lou Diamond Phillips will appear on the upcoming season if Brooklyn Nine-Nine.
"Jerry and Jessica Seinfeld can’t seem to let it go. Two months after the comedian refused to embrace pop star Kesha on the red carpet, wife Jessica posted a photo Tuesday of her husband hugging manager George Shapiro in front of a mural of the now-famous awkward encounter. 'Jerry is enjoying his tour Down Under. Here he is visiting the work of @lushsux with his manager of 500 years,' Jessica, 45, joked on Instagram. Jerry, 63, experience the wrath of Kesha’s fans in June after denying the singer a hug ahead of the National Night of Laughter and Song Event in DC."
Per Deadline, "'[w]e’re breaking story and we’re in episode two-ish,' revealed Emmy-nominated writer-producer Gordon Smith . . .about the status of season 4 for Better Call Saul.
"Smith, who received his second Emmy nomination for the AMC/Sony TV series this year sat down with Deadline Senior Editor Dominic Patten as well as Better Call Saul star Bob Odenkirk and co-creator Peter Gould. . .at Awardsline’s Emmy panel for the show. Take a look at last night’s panel above. It was Gould who first introduced the character of Saul Goodman in Breaking Bad; the cut-corners attorney who always lands on his feet. This year, the Breaking Bad prequel raked in nine Emmy noms in its third season bringing its lifetime running tally to 23. In addition to Smith’s nod for the episode Chicanery, the show is also up for outstanding drama series, lead drama actor (Odenkirk) and supporting actor drama (Jonathan Banks).
"While Gould and Smith largely remained quiet about what we can immediately expect next season, there were bits and pieces within tonight’s conversation. Odenkirk for one, who serves as a producer on the show, has a wish list of plot points.
“'Please let’s respect these guys,' responded Odenkirk to calls for season 4 spoilers, 'It’s like an egg with a really soft shell that they’re trying to carry across the room.'
"Gould echoed what he told Deadline at the end of the season: Jimmy McGill’s eccentric attorney brother Chuck (Michael McKean) is dead, having perished in a fire he started at his house in the last episode of season 3.
“'We try not to screw around with the audience where "you thought it was this, but it’s now that."' said Gould, 'To build up the way we did and not have consequences, it would be a wet cracker.'
"In addition, Gould revealed that’s there’s a happenstance rule on the show, whereby bad luck and problems make for great drama. 'We believe that coincidence is tricky, but if coincidence is good for a character, it’s problematic. But if coincidence is bad, that’s good.'
"One wish that Odenkirk expressed for a future episode: 'We have to meet Lalo,' said the two-time Emmy winner who won for writing on Saturday Night Live and The Ben Stiller Show, 'I want that monologue to mean a lot.' Odenkirk was referring to the time when we first met Saul Goodman in Breaking Bad: He’s kidnapped by Walter and Jesse and taken to a desert grave that’s been dug for him. Goodman begins begging for his life ('Oh, no, Lalo, please don’t do it!'). Wired magazine revealed that they spotted the name Lalo on a corkboard in the Better Call Saul writers’ room earlier this year. 'We have to earn our Breaking Bad crossover moments on the show,' said Gould.
"And Kim Wexler (Rhea Seehorn), Jimmy’s gal, getting into a near fatal car accident last season:Is that a foreshadow of what’s to come? Is that a forthcoming tragedy which puts Jimmy over the edge into fully transforming into Saul? Gould tossed the questions to the Romans in the Landmark Theater. 'Who wants to see Kim live?' asked the co-creator to great cheers.
“'Kim will become the regional director of Cinnabon,' joked Odenkirk.
"This soon led to chatter about Goodman’s alias, the tired and pale Cinnabon Gene, who appears in bookends of various episodes.
“'I want to see his life,' said Odenkirk about Gene’s fate, 'There’s no way for him to go on the way he is.'
"Gould expounded: 'I’m fascinated by the Gene element. [The show] is a prequel, and the Gene part of the story is a sequel. Doing this show is like a Rubik’s cube. We know certain events about these characters; they were deemed to meet for the first time on Breaking Bad … Gene fascinates me because he’s a survivor. There’s a cowardly aspect, but this guy told the kid, "Get a lawyer!" You realize then that this guy has gone through all these identities. They’re separate people that Bob is playing, but they’re like Russian nesting dolls and Gene is the biggest of them.'
"Odenkirk gave a shout-out to Patrick Fabian’s fierce turn as nemesis alpha male attorney Howard Hamlin. Odenkirk’s take on Jimmy’s relationship with Howard going forward? 'Hamlin is a guy who at the end of the day does the numbers and reappraises somebody. He’s willing to listen to Jimmy and I think he respects Jimmy in a meaningful way…but Hamlin would say no to Jimmy’s formidable brain. Yeah, Hamlin doesn’t want that anarchy around him,' said Odenkirk.
"Looking back, Gould said that if it wasn’t for Odenkirk’s sublime performance (a great clip was shown. . . showing Jimmy breaking down before his malpractice insurance agent, only to realize in the course of his cry that he can really double-cross his vengeful brother Chuck), that Better Call Saul 'wouldn’t have the breath of happening.'
“'When I wrote him at first, he wasn’t a multi-dimensional character. He was fun; the ultimate sleazebag lawyer,' said Gould, 'I remember Bob asking me "You guys are going to kill me off pretty quick?" I said, "Bob, we really like this character, we built a set and we can’t afford to kill you off.”'
"Said Gould about how much more Better Call Saul we can expect, 'I would rather have it end too soon, then go on for too long.'"
From TVLine: "Just when you thought it was finally safe to put your blue French horn in storage, along comes more talk about a How I Met Your Mother spinoff.
"A third attempt at an offshoot — one that would flip the script, with a woman telling her children how she met their father — is in the works, according to 20th Century Fox TV chairman Dana Walden. . . .'The studio will try [making another show] with different writers' than were used in previous efforts.'
“'[The writers] will be starting from scratch,' Walden explains. 'It’s one that’s being slowly cooked. If it’s the right idea, the right execution, we’ll take that.'
"The first attempt at a spinoff came in the form of 2014’s How I Met Your Dad, a pilot that was never to see the light of day, much less snag a series order at CBS. Starring the likes of Greta Gerwig, Nicholas D’Agosto and even Meg Ryan, the pilot — whose script was leaked online in full — remained tonally in sync with its predecessor.
"A second attempt was made in 2016, with This Is Us co-executive producers/writers Isaac Aptaker and Elizabeth Berger leading the charge. Unfortunately, the success of the duo’s NBC drama ultimately ate up their availability, resulting in the pilot’s demise."
From TheWrap: "As ABC prepares to re-launch American Idol with Ryan Seacrest and Katy Perry, Fox has ordered a new singing competition to fill the void left by the long-running and hugely successful show.
"Titled The Four, Fox’s new series will pit four semi-finalists — chosen at the beginning of the series by a panel of 'music industry experts' — against the audience, who will submit audition videos vying to replace one of the four on stage. If any of the four are outperformed by a challenger they’ll be replaced the following week.
"At the end of the competition, the four left standing will compete against one another and the winner will have the panelists join their team to 'help shepherd the winner’s career and be fully invested in making him or her a breakout star.' None of the panelists or hosts have yet been announced.
"The announcement comes just months after ABC announced its plans to revive Idol just over a year after the show concluded its highly-rated 15-season run on Fox.
"Fox co-chairman and CEO Dana Walden revealed shortly after that Idol producer FremantleMedia rebuffed the network’s offer to bring back the show after a multi-year hiatus. The network is surely hoping it’s new entry in the singing competition genre will be able to compete with the new Idol and NBC’s The Voice.
"Created by Armoza Formats and produced by ITV Entertainment, The Four is executive produced by David George, Adam Sher, David Eilenberg, Jessica Sebastian-Dayeh, Simon Thomas, Becca Walker, David Friedman, Avi Armoza and Nehama Cohen."
Per The Hollywood Reporter, "Peter Krause is going from one A-list showrunner to another.
"The Six Feet Under Emmy nominee has been tapped to star opposite Angela Bassett in Fox's drama 911 from Ryan Murphy and Brad Falchuk. Additionally, American Horror Story and Feud showrunner Tim Minear has boarded the series to serve as showrunner. McG has been enlisted to direct the pilot.
"Picked up straight to series in May, the procedural explores the high-pressure experiences of police, paramedics and firefighters who are thrust into the most frightening, shocking and heart-stopping situations. These emergency responders must try to balance saving those who are at their most vulnerable with solving the problems in their own lives. Additional character details about who Bassett and Krause will play are being kept under wraps.
"911 is slated to air its 13-episode season in midseason. A formal premiere date has not yet been determined. Glee co-creators Murphy and Falchuk will both executive produce via their 20th Century Fox Television-based production companies. The series continues their relationship with Fox after their two-season anthology Scream Queens came to an end earlier this year. The drama marks the latest collaboration for Murphy and Falchuk at Fox, where they produced musical phenomenon Glee. The frequent collaborators are also working on new seasons of FX anthologies American Horror Story and American Crime Story and have ongoing drama series Pose in the works for the cabler. The latter, set in the 1980s, explores life and society in New York including the rise of the luxury Trump-era universe, the downtown social and literary scene and the ball cultural world."
Per Buzzfeed, "[t]he second season of Netflix's 13 Reasons Why will surpass the novel it was originally based on, Thirteen Reasons Why by Jay Asher. That means fans will soon see characters and storylines they've never been introduced to before.
Production has already started on Season 2, and Netflix just revealed a host of new actors joining the show and a brief description of who they'll play.
"In the Season 1 finale of 13 Reasons Why, viewers learn that Hannah Baker (Katherine Langford) went to her guidance counselor, Mr. Porter (Derek Luke), for help, and he failed to help her or notify anyone of their meeting. Clay Jenkins (Dylan Minnette) confronts Mr. Porter and leaves him with the thirteen cassette tapes that Hannah recorded before she ended her life. The depositions in the court case against Liberty High School continue, and we also learn that Alex Standall (Miles Heizer) is hospitalized and in critical condition because of a gunshot to the head.
1. Bryce Cast will play a character named Cyrus, who Netflix describes as 'an edgy, cynical mischief maker who serves as an unexpected champion of the downtrodden.'
2. And Chelsea Alden will play Mackenzie, Cyrus's sister, 'an artsy, witty girl who isn’t afraid to speak her mind.'
3. Allison Miller will play Sonya, a 'smart and ambitious young litigator.'
4. Samantha Logan will play Nina, a 'well-respected track star' at Liberty High School.
5. Anne Winters will play Chloe, a popular new head cheerleader.
6. Kelli O'Hara will play Jackie, an 'advocate for victims of bullying.'
7. And Ben Lawson will play Rick, a 'beloved baseball coach' at Liberty High School.
"Season 2 is slated to launch on Netflix in 2018."
"Finn Wolfhard just couldn’t resist. Despite needing to be camera-ready for his NYLON photo shoot, the 14-year-old star of Stranger Things decided to suck on a blue Warhead anyway, and now he’s paying the price. 'All these sets have candy on them, and I can’t help myself. It was a mistake,' he admits, sheepishly trying to scrub the cerulean stain from his tongue with a miniature toothbrush. To his right, Gaten Matarazzo wears a gray T-shirt that reads, uh oh! did my sarcasm hurt your feelings?, a slogan worthy of Dustin Henderson, the lovable wisecracker he plays opposite Wolfhard on the hit Netflix show. Matarazzo, also 14, is getting his trademark tangle of curls straightened, much to the delight of Noah Schnapp, who, at 12, is the youngest in this group of breakout stars that has helped make Stranger Things the most obsessed-over show in Netflix’s boundless roster of original series. Missing is Caleb McLaughlin, the energetic 15-year-old who plays Lucas Sinclair, but he’s on his way over in a black car, having just arrived from Los Angeles, fresh off an appearance at the BET Awards.
"It’s the first time the boys have been together in several weeks, and none of them can pinpoint exactly when they were last in the same room. Ever since Stranger Things became a cultural phenomenon last summer, they’ve been swept up in a whirlwind of red carpets, talk shows, and fan conventions. And as the premiere of the sci-fi and horror fantasia’s top-secret second season nears, this summer has been overtaken by a flurry of promotional duties. Next week, while most kids their age are cooling off in pools or testing out the latest in roller coaster technology, Matarazzo and McLaughlin will be at Denver Comic Con, signing autographs and posing for selfies with wide-eyed fans. A few weeks after that, all four will find themselves inside the hallowed Hall H at San Diego Comic-Con, where they’ll premiere the thrilling trailer for Season 2 to rapturous applause.
"But on this day, even though they’re technically at work, the boys still find time to goof off. They are, after all, best friends—like brothers, even, they say—and there’s a lot of catching up to do, memes to be shared, and jokes to be cracked. “We used to call Noah ‘Señor Biebs,’” Matarazzo offers at one point, due to Schnapp’s Season 1 bowl cut and its resemblance to the former haircut of a certain Canadian pop star. 'He hates it!' he says, just before he sticks his finger into Schnapp’s ear (playfully, of course).
"Inside the bright and breezy photo studio on Manhattan’s West Side, publicists abound, but because these budding stars are still minors, there are also parents. It’s an unusual sight, and a reminder that despite having very grown-up jobs, they’re still not old enough to drive. Wolfhard, the Vancouver native who plays Mike Wheeler, is here with his father, as is Matarazzo, who hails from Little Egg Harbor Township, New Jersey. Schnapp and his parents came in from Westchester County, north of the city. When McLaughlin, who grew up in Carmel, New York, finally arrives lugging a suitcase that’s almost as big as he is, he’s accompanied by his father, a burly man in an Atlanta Braves cap who goes around the room with his son hugging the other parents, a reminder of how tight the makeshift family has become since this odyssey began more than two years ago.
"Stranger Things premiered as an underdog. Its creators, the twin brothers Matt and Ross Duffer, were unproven talents who had previously written for the Fox sci-fi series Wayward Pines. Except for Winona Ryder’s comeback as a grieving mother searching for her missing son, the cast was composed largely of unknowns and newcomers. But thanks to its double dose of supernatural intrigue and a nostalgic ’80s-tinged glow, along with a miraculous performance by a young British actress with a shaved head, Stranger Things quickly commandeered the pop-culture conversation in a way that few shows have done. In July, the show received a staggering 18 Emmy nominations, including Outstanding Drama Series.
"Created by the Duffers in the spirit of the Amblin-era entertainments they were raised on, the eight-episode first season is set in 1983 in Hawkins, Indiana, and unravels the mystery surrounding the disappearance of Will Byers, played by Schnapp, who vanishes in the first episode after an encounter with the show’s resident boogeyman, the otherworldly creature known as the Demogorgon. As Will’s three misfit best friends—Mike, Lucas, and Dustin—embark on a quest to find him, they uncover an alternate dimension they dub The Upside Down, and a sinister government conspiracy that may be responsible for opening it. They also befriend Eleven, the feral girl with telekinetic powers embodied iconically by 13-year-old Millie Bobby Brown.
"Stranger Things began filming its second season under very different circumstances than the first. What once felt like a scrappy production free of scrutiny from outside sources suddenly had the mood and atmosphere of a major Hollywood blockbuster. 'Netflix knew it would be a good show,' McLaughlin says, 'but they didn’t realize how big it would be and that the whole world was going to freak out about it.' Because of that intense interest from both the network and the public, the set suddenly had a noticeable security presence shielding it from nosy onlookers and paparazzi, while network executives showed up to make sure their prized racehorse was galloping along. Suddenly, there were expectations. 'We raised the bar pretty high with the first season,' says Matarazzo. 'There was a lot more tension on set, in that we really needed to make sure it was good.'
"When Season 2 premieres on October 27, a year will have passed since Eleven sacrificed herself to defeat the faceless Demogorgon and save the boys, in the Season 1 finale. Trying to squeeze spoilers out of Wolfhard, McLaughlin, Schnapp, and Matarazzo is useless. Extensive media training, including detailed notes on what they can and can’t discuss, have transformed them into a rare breed: teenagers who can keep a secret. What they can say: Season 2 is bigger, darker, and scarier. There’s also a new character in town, played by Sadie Sink. (According to the Duffers, Millie Bobby Brown was 'relieved' to have another girl on set.) 'She’s a skater, sort of a punk girl, and she slowly becomes part of the group,' says Wolfhard, who also says his character will be depressed and 'a loner' in the wake of Eleven’s disappearance. What they can’t say: pretty much everything else. But it’s not just scoop-hungry journalists who harass them for info. 'Whenever you get recognized by fans, most of the time they ask you if you’ve got any spoilers for Season 2, and I’m like, "No, none, not at all,”' says Matarazzo. 'It’s definitely kind of stressful.'
"One of the biggest changes for the new season is the expansion of Schnapp’s screen time. Because his character spends much of the first season trapped in an alternate dimension, Schnapp spent a good deal of time at home in New York while everyone else filmed in Atlanta. 'Last year I would drive up to the studio and everyone would be like, "Hey, Noah, we’ve missed you! How’ve you been?”' says Schnapp. 'This year was a lot easier because last year, I’d have to go in and out of school, and that was hard. This year I could focus.'
"Although he’s rescued from The Upside Down, we last saw Schnapp removing a slithery creature from his mouth, a telltale sign that not all is well with Will Byers. For Schnapp, whose character mostly communicated through Christmas lights in Season 1, the new episodes meant new challenges as an actor. 'Shawn Levy, one of our directors, was telling me, "Noah, you have something really big this season. We have a lot in store for you, and you should get really excited,”' he says. Schnapp felt the added pressure, and would sometimes text his TV mom, Ryder, for extra help with particularly emotional scenes. 'We knew we needed a strong actor in case the series moved forward into a second season, because we knew he was going to be a centerpiece,' says Matt Duffer. 'We needed not just a good actor, but a really, really good actor.' Schnapp rose to the occasion, according to the Duffers. 'Shawn [Levy] was like, "We’ve had a Ferrari sitting in the garage all of Season 1, and now the fucking garage doors are open.”'
"The Duffers knew that casting child actors, who have a tendency to favor exaggerated performances over naturalistic ones, would make or break their show. 'There’s really nothing worse than a bad child performance,' Ross Duffer says. 'You couldn’t have any weaknesses, or the eight hours would be excruciating.' Along with their casting director, the Duffers saw what they estimate to be 900 kids, an undertaking they say was easier than it sounds because they could tell within the first few minutes if the actor had what they needed. 'You’re looking for something authentic, and most kids don’t have it,' says Ross. 'There are the ones that are obviously well-trained, but they feel too Disney, like they’re winking at the camera.' What the Duffers found with their four young male stars were kids who seemed like actual kids.
"Matarazzo was the first one cast, his audition so impressive that he found out he got the part on the way back from the airport. 'We didn’t really even know who the Dustin character was until we found Gaten,' says Matt Duffer. 'He was sort of a generic nerd with glasses. He was a stereotype.' Matarazzo, whose sense of humor inspired the Duffers to transform Dustin into the show’s primary source of comic relief, has grown up with a condition known as cleidocranial dysplasia, which stunts the development of bones and teeth. 'We wanted to make a show about outsiders, about kids who didn’t fit in and who were bullied and made fun of,' says Matt. 'Gaten was really able to tap into all of that.'
"McLaughlin and Matarazzo had known each other from their days as stars in two of Broadway’s biggest shows. Matarazzo portrayed Gavroche in Les Misérables, and McLaughlin played Simba in The Lion King. They’d often see each other in a park frequented by “Broadway kids,” as Matarazzo calls them. 'When I found out Caleb had gotten Lucas I was like, "Caleb? Where do I know that name from?”' he recalls. Wolfhard and Schnapp established an early connection, too—sort of. 'He doesn’t remember me, but I remember him,' Wolfhard says. 'Because I asked him what other projects he had done, and he said, "I was the voice of Charlie Brown in The Peanuts Movie.' I was like, "What?! You’re Charlie Brown?" I was so pysched about that.'
"Although they had all crossed paths during the audition process, usually around the hotel pool or at chemistry reads, it wasn’t until they arrived in Atlanta to begin production that all four boys, along with Millie Bobby Brown, found themselves together in the same room for the first time. If there was a first-day-of-school feel, it made sense: They met in a classroom, which is where the young cast of Stranger Things still spend most of their time when they’re not filming. That grueling schedule means the only opportunities they get to really mess around are between takes, and sometimes during them. 'We have laughing problems,' says McLaughlin. Matt Duffer elaborates: 'We definitely have an issue, where we can’t get through a take without someone busting up. They’re always making each other crack up—the number of takes ruined by laughter is in the hundreds.'
"Schnapp was at summer camp when Stranger Things dropped on Netflix. He wasn’t allowed to have his phone, but shortly after the series premiered, one of his counselors happened to check his Instagram account—80,000 followers. The next day it was 85,000. 'I was like, "Wait, what’s going on?" I think I was at one follower before that,' Schnapp says. Wolfhard also remembers that odd rush of watching his followers skyrocket and realizing his life was changing right in front of his eyes. McLaughlin felt his anonymity evaporate the first time he was recognized. 'In L.A., this kid came up to me and was like, "Hey, are you Caleb Reginald McLaughlin?”' he says. 'And I’m like, "What? You know my middle name? That’s nuts.”'
"The connection between the boys is strengthened by the surreal turn their lives have taken, circumstances that most kids their age can’t relate to. When Matarazzo, McLaughlin, and Wolfhard met Barack Obama last October, as guests of the White House’s South by South Lawn festival, the former president, who’s a fan of the show, told them he especially enjoyed their on-screen camaraderie. That bond exists offscreen, too, and has only gotten stronger with every award show and panel. 'They really are my best friends,' Matarazzo says. 'We can relate to each other a lot more than other people can. People try to understand everything that goes on, but they can’t unless they’ve been there.'
“'I don’t think any of the kids would say that our friendship is similar to the friendships they have back home, because it’s not,' says Wolfhard. 'No kid has ever really had an experience that I’m experiencing right now—it’s a unique sort of friendship.'
"Wolfhard is careful not to bring his work home with him. 'If you go home and all you talk about is acting, then you’re a douchebag,' he says. 'Your friends don’t want to hear about your professional life, they just want to mess around.' Plus, when you’re 14 years old, talking about work is never cool, even if it involves facing off against a faceless interdimensional demon. The boys are also learning that with a great number of Instagram followers comes great responsibility. 'We have to be more cautious with what we say on social media and in public,' says McLaughlin, who was shocked to lose followers after he openly rooted for the Golden State Warriors during the NBA playoffs.
"While Netflix has yet to make an official announcement, a third season of Stranger Things is a given, meaning the boys are all but guaranteed to live out their teenage years on one of the most popular shows on television. The Duffers, then, will have to follow in the footsteps of long-running properties like Game of Thrones and the Harry Potter franchise in making sure their child actors don’t grow up faster than their characters. 'It’s terrifying,' Matt Duffer says. 'I shouldn’t even be highlighting this, but if you watch Season 2, they’ve grown from Episode 1 to Episode 9. I’m terrified one of them is going to have a major growth spurt basically in the middle of shooting. But as long as they’re growing outside of the course of our shooting, I’m not too worried about it, because we just have to build it into our story. As much as you would like to keep some of it more continuous, every time we take a break between seasons, we have to make a year time jump at least.'
"All four actors say that they want to remain in show business into adulthood. Wolfhard, who obsessively studies the filmmaking process while on set—he’ll star in the remake of Stephen King’s It, in theaters this month—is eyeing a multihyphenate career as a director, actor, and musician. Back at the photo shoot, Matarazzo and Schnapp gather around his iPhone to watch a video Wolfhard co-directed for a friend’s band, Spendtime Palace. Earlier this year, McLaughlin, who is a trained dancer, played a young Ricky Bell on the BET miniseries The New Edition Story, an experience he describes as 'historic.' Matarazzo wants to continue acting, but not forever, and is keeping an open mind about other aspects of the industry. Schnapp, who took his first acting class at the age of six, describes winning the Screen Actors Guild Award for Outstanding Performance by an Ensemble in a Drama Series as one of the greatest moments of his life, and is doing exactly what he wants. (The boys, who describe the awards as 'very heavy,' keep them in their bedrooms, except for Matarazzo, who has been meaning to retrieve his from his grandparents’ house. )
“'They all love what they’re doing,' says Matt Duffer. 'They love coming to set, they love working, they love acting. In terms of the fame thing, it’s a side effect that I think some of them are more into than others. You’re worried about, "What if they realize this isn’t their true passion?" They’re so young. But this year those fears went away. They’re all very committed to this. That’s the important thing, that they enjoy what they’re doing. And that they’re passionate about it.'”