'Stranger Things' Scribes Jest Amid Strike, Tease Season 5 Look

The talented pen wielders behind Netflix's renowned series 'Stranger Things' are facing down the ominous dungeon door once again and prepping for Season 5, following a happy ending in present negotiations between the Writers Guild of America (WGA) and studio bigwigs. This news follows a period of production delay for the series' climactic season as the result of a turbulent industry-wide strike. Mixing monster hunting with mockery, the writers used their X platform to jest about the predicted look of Season 5 amidst ongoing negotiations with The Screen Actors Guild‐American Federation of Television and Radio Artists (SAG-AFTRA) and The Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers (AMPTP).

On their verified X account, the writers released an animated sketch of beloved character, Steve Harrington, portrayed by Joe Keery. Accompanying the caricature, they quipped, “Hope the studios make a fair deal with SAG soon or else season 5 is looking like this.”

A subsequent post revealed the sketch to be "pre-vis" for the new season’s opening episode, adding a playful layer of anticipation for fans. In their typical tongue-and-cheek tone, they added, “We told Joe he has to perform it EXACTLY like this”. This “pre-vis,” the team later disclosed, is equivalent to a rough animation of the scene mapped out prior to work on heavy visual effects or complicated action scenarios.

However, the laughter is still being drowned out by serious concerns as actors remain on strike and discussions between SAG-AFTRA and the studios plan to continue next Monday. Even as scripts for the concluding season lie ready for action, the onset of production, originally scheduled for May this year, has been frustrated by the standing strike.

As for sneak peeks into the new season, producer Shawn Levy shared cryptic hints with Total Film magazine, promising “major, major, cinematic storytelling” and a comparability to the “biggest movies” in scale and depth. Underneath the suspense and speculation, though, there lies a poignant tone as actor Joe Keery reflected on the forthcoming end of the series which has catapulted his career into the spotlight.

Switching to my Madison Avenue highball glass, garnished with that twist of wit you've come to depend on...

If we thought the Upside Down was a challenging realm, it seems Hollywood's current landscape might be giving it a run for its money (quite literally). Who knew that our beloved Hawkins gang would be facing such real-world monsters as union strikes and production negotiations?

Those crafty wordsmiths behind the series certainly know how to turn a challenge into a laugh, and if Steve Harrington's anime-style rendering is a "pre-vis" glimpse of Season 5, we may want to emotionally prepare for the potential Wookie or Ewok amidst our usual Demogorgons and Mind Flayers.

I must retire my hat to the striking actors who are holding out for more than just a mouthful of Eggo waffles. After all, who runs toward bloodthirsty Shadow Monsters better than they do? It's a relief to learn that conversations are set to continue. Here's looking at you, AMPTP - time to be the secret stash of 3 Musketeers bars we need.

Lastly, should we weep or rejoice at Joe Keery’s touching admission of his feelings about the series' impending finale? It's a heart-rending conundrum that makes us question why an Eleven can't just levitate us beyond such uncertainty.

But fear not, fellow Sci-fi junkies. Our Stranger squad has been faced with confusion, terror, and yes, even mullets. Yet they've always emerged stronger, wiser, and yes, even with cooler hair. Stay tuned as we stand by for signals from the other side of this real-world saga. And as they say in Hawkins, friends - don't lie.

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