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Stranger Things Final Season Pitch Made Netflix Executives Cry

Fans of Netflix hit series Stranger Things should brace themselves for an emotional final season. The creators of the show and several of its cast members hinted at what viewers should expect from a blockbuster Season 5 during a panel in Los Angeles Sunday night.

Creators Ross and Matt Duffer, executive producer Shawn Levy, and cast Millie Bobby Brown, Caleb McLaughlin, Priah Ferguson, Jamie Campbell Bower, Joseph Quinn and Eduardo Franco took part in the panel held at Tudum Theater.

The Duffer brothers revealed that the team had finished writing the season’s first episode, “The Crawl.” The crew also conducted a two-hour pitch meeting with Netflix execs to lay out the series ending, which left some executives in tears. According to Matt Duffer, just a few individuals know how the series will end.

“We did get our executives to cry, which I felt was a good sign that these executives were crying. The only other times I’ve seen them cry were like budget meetings.”

After submitting the first episode of the beloved series’ final season, Ross Duffer reflected on the show’s remarkable run.

“We turned in the first script a couple of weeks ago and we’re onto the second. It’s full steam ahead. I remember Season 1 we were just amazed that Netflix was letting us do this at all, but Season 2 was when we really, with the writers, we developed an overall plan and a back story for all of this and make sure that, with the Upside Down, everything about what it was.”

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Patton Oswalt, who served as the panel’s moderator, probed for information on Season 5’s emotional underpinnings. Fans hope the show will continue weaving 80s horror and pop culture references into its script.

“Five, the way we see it, is kind of a culmination of all the seasons, so it’s sort of got a little bit from each, whereas before each season was so distinctly … [Season] 3 is our big summer blockbuster season with big monsters, and [Season] 4 was the psychological horror. I think that what we’re trying to do is go back to the beginning a little bit, in sort of the tone of [Season] 1.”

Ross Duffer also shared that the last episodes of Season 5 will be comparable to Season 4 “scale-wise.” 

Season 4 of the series became the most expensive Netflix original created, costing around 30 million dollars to make each episode. In comparison, Breaking Bad Season 5 was 3.5 million dollars an episode, and Game of Thrones Season 8 was 15 million dollars an episode.

The series’ outstanding ratings among viewers and 12 Emmy wins suggest that the production costs were well worth it.

“Just as important as the supernatural, we have so many characters now, most of whom are still living. It’s important to wrap up those arcs because a lot of these characters have been growing since Season 1. So, it’s a balancing act between giving them time to complete their character arcs and also tying up these loose ends and doing our final reveals.”

Levy, the show’s executive producer, has praised the Duffer brothers’ dedication to the show over the years.

“As a witness and having been in that two-hour pitch room and having read this first script — I’m paralyzed with fear that I’ll spoil anything but I will say the thing about these Duffer Brothers is that even though the show has gotten so famous and the characters have gotten so iconic and there’s so much about the ’80s and the supernatural and the genre, it’s about these people, it’s about these characters. Season 5 is already so clearly taking care of these stories of the characters because that’s always been the lifeblood of Stranger Things.”

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Matt Duffer revealed in August that the creators were considering not adding any new cast members during the final season to retain the focus on the current ensemble. Some viewers have criticized the show in the past for its reluctance to kill off main characters, which seems  idealistic in a world filled with ravenous monsters.

“Whenever we introduce a new character, we want to make sure that they’re going to be an integral part of the narrative. So that’s something with Eddie this season, where we go, ‘Well, we need a character here for this storyline to really work, and to give it the engine that is needed.’ But every time we do that, we’re nervous, because you go, ‘We’ve got a great cast of characters here, and actors, and any moment we’re spending with a new character, we’re taking time away from one of the other actors.’ So we’re just very, very careful about who we’re introducing.”

David Harbour, who plays Jim Hopper in the series, believes the final season will be a “home run.” Harbour said that playing Hopper has been “the role of a lifetime in many ways” and that he is going to pour his “heart and soul” into playing him for the last time.

“I know those Duffer brothers are very specific, and I know they want to get that last season. I mean if you look at Season 4, I have a feeling that Season 5 may not be as long, but it certainly will be packed to the brim with good stuff that you love. I mean, they really are getting better at giving you that home run that the audiences love. And I think that Season 5 will do that so much.”

Netflix Home Screen

Netflix Reveals 2021 Film Slate, Will Deliver At Least One New Movie A Week 

Many movie lovers were skeptical when Netflix announced last October that they would be delivering new movies every week in 2021. This week, Netflix made good on its promise with the announcement of their 2021 film slate, which guarantees at least one new feature film every week. The platform went on to state that in total it would be delivering 71 new titles across a multitude of genres this year.

Netflix currently is one of the most popular streaming services with over 193 million subscribers, and that number is likely to grow this year with the announcement of all of these original films. Most of the films that will be released are completely original productions. 

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Within the epic trailer reel that Netflix uploaded to their social media this week, notable actors like Dwayne Johnson, Melissa McCarthy, Jason Momoa, Halle Berry, Chris Hemsworth, Amy Adams, and so many others were featured as stars for the new titles. All projects will be rolled out throughout the next 12 months. 

Of all the titles announced the ones being discussed the most heavily online currently include “Red Notice,” starring Gal Gadot, Johnson, and Reynolds; the Western “The Harder They Fall” with Regina King, Idris Elba and “Lovecraft County” breakout Jonathan Majors; Adams’ “The Woman in The Window”; Zach Snyder’s “Army of the Dead”; Lin-Manuel Miranda’s “Tick, Tick … Boom!”; and the impossibly starry “Don’t Look Up” starring Jennifer Lawrence, Leonardo DiCaprio, Ariana Grande, Timothee Chalamet, Kid Cudi and Meryl Streep.

The trailer also revealed that Netflix will be releasing the highly anticipated third installments of the “To All The Boys I’ve Loved Before” and “The Kissing Booth” movie series. The release of these films is being seen as an extremely smart move from the streaming giant. 

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Netflix is currently the global leader in streaming, which makes sense considering it was one of the original streaming services to hit the market. Hollywood studios such as Warner Bros. are currently struggling to cope with fallouts over movie deals and theater closures. Many of these studios are turning to streaming services as a means of making up for the revenue lost due to the pandemic; Warner Bros. collaborated with HBO Max in terms of releasing their 2021 movie slate. 

With the Covid-19 vaccine taking much longer than originally anticipated to be distributed throughout America, and the pandemic being the worst it’s ever been for the nation, Netflix is in an incredible position to cater to the millions of Americans who have been and will continue to stay home in order to do their part in curbing the spread of the virus. 

The slate also includes a few possible franchise starters for new Netflix original movie series, including “Wish Dragon” a film from Sony Pictures Animation that comes from the same studio that created “Spider-Man: Into The Spiderverse.” 

To watch the Netflix 2021 original movie slate trailer and to see all the titles that will be coming to the platform this year, click here.

Christmas Movie

New Netflix Original Christmas Movies To Get You In The Holiday Spirit This Year

The holiday season is finally here, and what better way to get into the spirit of the season than cozying up under a blanket by the fire, making some hot cocoa, and watching a fun new Christmas movie. Thanks to the Covid-19 pandemic, many of us aren’t able to embark on all of the traditional holiday adventures we’re used to, however, there’s quite literally never been a better time to stay home and marathon a bunch of your favorite holiday movies, and maybe sprinkle in some of these newer soon-to-be classics to your list: 

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Holidate: This is one of the most highly anticipated Netflix originals to have dropped this year. Emma Roberts stars as Sloane, a lonely girl who’s not looking forward to facing another holiday season alone when she meets Jackson, played by Luke Bracey, who has the same mentality. The two decide to fake dating each other so that they’re not alone during the holidays, and so they don’t have to hear 50 questions from their families about settling down. However, to both their surprise, things quickly begin to get more serious than anticipated. 

Operation Christmas Drop: Starring The Vampire Diaries Kat Graham as Erica, this movie follows a young woman who visits a US Air Force Base with the mentality that she’ll be shutting it down. However, after listening and witnessing the hardwork and Christmas spirit that these soldiers deliver every year, she starts to have a change of heart, and maybe even starts to fall in love along the way. 

Jingle Jangle: This new Netflix original musical is being widely discussed among Christmas movie lovers right now. The story follows a toymaker named Jingle Jangle who needs to either pay back his bosses the money he borrowed years prior to invent a brand new revolutionary Christmasd toy, or invent the toy as promised. However lacking inspiration for years, Jingle Jangle will need to call upon his young granddaughter to help.

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The Princess Switch: Switched Again: If you were a fan of the wondrous cheesiness that came with the original “Princess Switch’ movie then you’re likely to love the sequel just as much. In this sequel, Stacy and Margarey reunite for one final switch before Margaret is given the title of Queen of Montenegro. However, things get even more complex when Margaret’s look alike cousin, Fiona, comes to visit and offers another twist to the film. 

Dolly Parton’s Christmas On The Square: In this film, Regina Fuller (Christine Baranski) returns to her hometown after her father’s death in order to sell his property and quickly return to her busy life. Suddenly, right before Christmas, Fuller is visited by a Christmas Angel (Dolly Parton) who urges her to change her ways before it’s too late. This modern take on A Christmas Carol is filled with modern music and sparkly scenic elements that will put you right in the Christmas spirit. Plus, who doesn’t love Dolly Parton?

The Christmas Chronicles: Part Two: “The Christmas Chronicles” made headlines last year as one of Netflix’s most popular holiday films to date. Now, the highly anticipated sequel brings back Kurt Russel as everyone’s favorite Santa. In this film, Kate and Jack must go to the North Pole in order to save it before it’s completely destroyed by an evil force. The two must act quickly, if they don’t, Chrisymas may be gone forever.