We at Collider are thrilled to exclusively debut a new behind-the-scenes featurette for Stranger Things 2 that takes a deep dive into the show’s cinematography. Since Stranger Things first debuted on Netflix and took viewers and critics by storm, fans have been enraptured by the 80s-set sci-fi tale that evokes classic films from the golden Amblin era. But it’s not just the story and characters of Stranger Things that’s evocative of movies like E.T. or The Goonies—it’s the visual presentation as well.
Creators, writers, producers, and directors The Duffer Brothers made a concerted effort to tackle each Stranger Things season as if it were one long movie, and that led to a very cinematic visual style. To establish the visual tone of the series, the Duffers turned to Girls and Mr. Robot cinematographer Tim Ives, who explains in this featurette how some of the more iconic shots from Stranger Things 2 came to pass—including the void footage and how he was able to light the cave sequences.
Ives, alongside the Duffer Brothers and others involved in making Stranger Things 2 a reality, also explains the overall visual approach to the show in this video. Specifically speaking about the 80s influence, Ives discusses how films from that era would use a blue light coming from a window to evoke nighttime. That’s not traditionally done anymore, but it’s one technique that Ives revived for Stranger Things that bleeds into the overall vibe of the series.
This is a really fascinating and refreshingly technical look at how Stranger Things 2 was made from a cinematic standpoint, and it’s exciting to hear the folks involved in creating such a massively popular and complex series get into specifics about how this delightful magic trick was pulled off.
Check out the featurette in the video below, and for even more on the show’s cinematography check out my interview with Ives. Stranger Things 2 is currently available to stream on Netflix.