14. The kids were cast through blind auditions
In order for Stranger Things to find the five perfect kids (plus an additional two bullies), the casting director sifted through several hundred audition tapes. But unlike most movies or television shows, the Duffer Brothers didn’t have a lot of guidelines for casting the kids.
Backstage spoke with the casting director, the Emmy-winning Carmen Cuba, who said:
"I know this sounds cliché, especially when it comes to casting, but the Duffer Brothers were really just looking for the best actors for the roles. What was great about this process was that we were able to find kids who had so much of their own individual traits and energy that they shaped their own characters organically, and we had enough time before shooting that the writers could build the story to the actual actors we cast. As we met each kid who went further and further in the [audition] process, it was clear that the story could go in very different directions depending on who we picked and then again who we matched them up with."
According to Cuba, the kids they hired influenced the direction of the story greatly. I know it’s on Netflix, but I would love an official Blu-ray set of Stranger Things with behind-the-scenes footage and deleted clips. Or even more audition tapes.