Matthew Modine keen to explore more of Brenner’s background as he admits Stranger Things season 4 was ‘difficult to film’

The star had a dramatic part to play in the last season of the hit show (Picture: Getty)

*This article contains spoilers for Stranger Things season 4*

has indicated his interest in ‘exploring’ more of Dr Martin Brenner’s background on after a dramatic climax for his character in the show’s well-received fourth season earlier this year.

The Full Metal Jacket star said that there was ‘so much we don’t know’ about the character, who was Ki**ed off after his Nina Project in the Nevada desert with Dr Owens was attacked by Lt Col Jack Sullivan.

Brenner, a.k.a ‘Papa’ to Eleven (), had as he tried to work with his adoptive daughter to help her access her psychokinetic abilities once more, after she lost them following the Battle of Starcourt.

Although he was seen preventing her from leaving the facility to help her friends in danger in Hawkins, even drugging and collaring her to make her stay, she ended up sitting down next to him in the desert as he lay dying, having forced the military helicopters to crash into the building with her regained abilities.

‘It was, from season one through four, very important for me to help the audience to understand that Brenner ‘Papa’ loved Eleven,’ Modine told of their characters’ complex relationship.

‘In season four, I was given the opportunity to show that Papa shared that affection for all the numbers.’

Brenner/’Papa’ has a complicated relationship with this adopted daughter, Eleven (Picture: Netflix/Kobal/Rex/Shutterstock)
The actor revealed he still had a lot of his own questions about Brenner (Picture: Ken McKay/ITV/Shutterstock)

He added: ‘There’s so much we don’t know about Brenner. How was he chosen for the job? What qualifications are necessary to get a job like his? Does he have his own special powers? Is he patient 000? So many questions that would be fun to explore and maybe answer.

‘In season four, the audience had the opportunity to begin to learn more about Eleven and her relationship with Papa. That was wonderful for both Millie Bobby Brown and myself to explore and to play.’

The actor also confirmed that the ‘entire season was difficult to play’ in terms of his demanding scenes. 

Modine with co-star Millie Bobby Brown in 2017 (Picture: Eric Charbonneau/Rex/Shutterstock)
Modine among the cast of Stranger Things season four at the world premiere (Picture: Stephen Lovekin/Rex/Shutterstock)

Modine wasn’t able to discuss any speculation for season five of Stranger Things, potentially (perhaps) leaving the door open for some sort of return – stranger things have happened after all.

Showrunners the Duffer Brothers recently teased the final season as with ‘a little bit from each’.

The 63-year-old star, who will be in, also surprised fans at Stranger Things: The Experience in London recently, when he dropped by in full costume, having .

The star dropped by to surprise London fans on Stranger Things day (Picture: Getty)

The interactive experience at Troubadour Brent Cross Studios was taken to the next level for lucky attendees, with Modine calling it ‘an absolute pleasure’ to return the kindness to fans in person who have ‘given me so much’.

Recalling how it went, the star explained: ‘The fans ‘see’ me in the experience via television and it appears that I’m speaking directly to them. For our visit I entered the actual world the fans are in. It is so much fun to see their reactions to Brenner entering their lives! It was a great giggle for all.’ 

When asked if he remained strictly in character throughout, he admitted: ‘I think what I was doing was a send-up of the whole thing. I was there to have a laugh with the fans. And we had a good one!’ 

‘It was a great giggle for all’ (Picture: Getty)

Modine is currently in London, rehearsing as part of the new company for To Kill A Mockingbird in the West End, a new stage adaptation of Harper Lee’s famous novel by Oscar winner, and directed by Bartlett Sher.

His first performance is scheduled for November 21 at the Gielgud Theatre.

‘Rehearsals are going very well. It’s a massive production with lots of moving parts, a giant cast, and wonderful dialogue. I love my cast mates and we’re all very excited to perform and share this epic, tragic story with audiences.’ 

The star previously took on the role of lawyer Atticus Finch in a US production in 2009, but was keen to return to the character in a new version.

‘This production is quite different than the production I previously performed. The London production is much larger in scope and a much fiercer text. I love Atticus because he represents hope. Lord knows we need more hope, which will – hopefully – activate the many actions necessary to provoke peace.’

Stanger Things is streaming on Netflix now. Stranger Things: The Experience runs until January 8, 2023. To Kill A Mocking Bird is currently booking until March 4, 2023.


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