Winona Ryder’s Guide To New Netflix Show ‘Stranger Things’

It’s 1983 in the small town of Hawkins, Indiana, and odd happenings are afoot. Joyce Buyers’ (Winona Ryder) son Will (Noah Schnapp) disappears while playing Dungeons & Dragons with his pals, and what follows is part Twin Peaks, part E.T. and full-on fascinating. She tells NME all about it.

I play Joyce Buyers
“She’s a single mom of two boys: a teenager, Jonathan, and Will, who’s 11. She’s broke and working two jobs. She works Christmases and Thanksgiving. She’s struggling. Her husband took off when Will was five and never gave her any help, so there’s a little bitterness there.”

I’m not a parent…
“But I have done a lot of work with The National Center For Missing & Exploited Children. There’s been stuff in my life that’s happened. I had to tap into a lot of really frightening stuff. It was incredibly emotional for me.”

I was trying to look as unglamorous as possible
“I just wanted to look very different from what certain people have expected. I used to have a whole thing where I would start with the shoes. It really helps you understand what kind of character you are. Someone who wears heels is very different to someone who wears flip-flops. I chose to weigh myself down with a lot and obviously it wasn’t a vanity thing for me.”

Stranger Things is set in a small town
“And you really just don’t know what’s around the corner or what’s going to happen. As the story plays out, you find out things, sometimes as they’re happening. It’s like putting pieces of the puzzle together. Joyce’s heart is shattered and she’s in a totally different place so she can’t really be logical. Everyone thinks she’s out of her mind but she’s actually kind of onto something.”

It’s got danger
“It has a nostalgia. It has these great kids who are really fun to watch and are really unique and very funny, so it’s got humour. It’s got government conspiracy and then it’s got some supernatural stuff and it’s also got a human thread throughout; friendship and family and community.”

Stranger Things is available on Netflix from July 15