ATLANTA, Ga. – If you haven’t heard the buzz surrounding Netflix’s hit thriller “Stranger Things,” you may have missed the fun fact that it’s filmed all around Atlanta.
“Stranger Things” takes place in 1983 in the small town of Hawkins, Indiana. The story follows the mysterious disappearance of a 12-year-old boy and the strange happenings in a small Midwestern town.
As friends, family and local police search for answers, they are drawn into an extraordinary mystery involving top secret government experiments, terrifying supernatural forces and one very strange little girl. This results in viewers going on an 80s-infused binge-watching fests of all eight episodes.
The show was filmed both on sound stages as well as on location in Atlanta. Screen Gems Studios housed the interiors of the Wheeler and Byers homes as well as the government lab.
The production filmed on location in small towns surrounding Atlanta to capture the small-town look of Hawkins, Indiana, including downtown Jackson, Ga., a school in Stockbridge, Ga., and a Cold War-era looking building near Emory University in Atlanta.
Production designer Chris Trujillo was tasked with creating the world of Hawkins, Indiana, in Georgia and set in 1983 – no small feat. Trujillo says about the world the Duffer brothers wanted was “A recreation of what we remembered and loved growing up as kids in the 80s – a reinvention of classic American cinema from the early 80s. This was a dream project for me because this was my world as a kid.”
“Atlanta was actually quite the perfect location to play Hawkins because of its similar typography as well as the treasure troves of set décor we discovered at estate sales,” Trujillo told Netflix. “We’d freak people out! We’d find these amazing homes that look like time capsules from the late 70s and early 80s and go in and go in and basically buy everything, including what was in the junk drawers.”
From Schlitz beer cans to walkie talkies to Dungeons and Dragons to wood-paneled station wagons, “Stranger Things” evokes the 80s in subtle but meaningful ways. “We never wanted it to be ‘in-your-face’ 80s and obvious,” said Trujillo. “The lived-in look was important to us so that it would feel familiar to audiences, and not distract them.”
You can expect the cast and crew of Stranger Things to paint the town with 80s flair again when they come back to film season 2.