David Harbour Predicted ‘Stranger Things’ Would Be Canceled After Season 1: ‘It Was Going to Be a Disaster’

Stranger Things” is Netflix’s most blockbuster TV franchise, but star David Harbour feared the show would be canceled after filming the first season. The Emmy nominee said on BBC’s “The One Show” (via Insider) that he started losing hope for the show’s success midway through filming Season 1.

“I remember when we were shooting the first season. We were down in Atlanta, Netflix had given us a budget of about $20,” Harbour said.  “Halfway through I remember my hair person coming up to me, like about episode four we were shooting, and she was like, ‘I don’t think it’s gonna work.’”

“By the time we finished, we wrapped, I thought we wouldn’t get a second season, we’d be the first Netflix show kind of ever to never get a second season,” Harbour added. “We thought no one would watch it, it was going to be a disaster.”

To say Harbour was wrong would be an understatement. The recently-released fourth season of “Stranger Things” broke records this summer to become Netflix’s biggest English-language TV season in history. While the Harbour-starring series will wrap up in its fifth and final season, Netflix will keep the “Stranger Things” franchise alive well into the future. Creators Matt and Ross Duffer are working on a spinoff series, while a stage play set within the world and mythology of “Stranger Things” is in the works. It will be produced by Sonia Friedman, Stephen Daldry, and Netflix. Daldry will also direct.

In an interview earlier this summer, the Duffer brothers said their spinoff idea will not be centered on a pre-existing character. “It’s not following…I’ve read these rumors that there’s gonna be an Eleven spinoff, that there’s gonna be a Steve and Dustin spinoff or that it’s another number,” the duo said. “That’s not interesting to us because we’ve done all that. We’ve spent I don’t know how many hours exploring all of that. So it’s very different.”

Even if the Duffer brothers decided to go with a prequel centered on Harbour’s Hopper, the actor would not mind. “At this point, I think Hopper is a character that can exist independent of me,” he told GQ magazine. “If they wanna go back in time, forward in time… I’d love to see another actor play Hopper, and see what they can bring to it…. I think as soon as the show ends, or maybe six months before it ends, you’ll be hearing about whatever spin-offs [the Duffer Brothers] have planned.”

Harbour’s pick to play a young Hopper is “Euphoria” and “The Kissing Booth” star Jacob Elordi. Four seasons of “Stranger Things” are now streaming on Netflix.