Stranger Things: I am amazed at my luck, says Jamie Campbell Bower

This article contains spoilers about Stranger Things series four </p> Jamie Campbell Bower plays the monstrous Vecna on the Netflix series Stranger Things.

Stranger Things: I am amazed at my luck, says Jamie Campbell Bower

This article contains spoilers about Stranger Things series four

Jamie Campbell Bower plays the monstrous Vecna on the Netflix series Stranger Things. He endured eight hours of make up a day to play the role of the supernatural serial killer.

He is quite relaxed about it though, stating that he took frequent breaks during the tedious process.

"I'll admit it, I smoke. We went into a great flow and realized that we could take a five-minute break about once an hour.

"I would step outside and get a little air."

The show is hugely popular and fans are eager to see what happens when it returns to Hawkins on Friday.

Campbell Bower, who is clearly a key figure in the storyline, tells BBC that it was an "absolute joy, an honor" to work alongside Barrie Gower (creator of the show's creature prosthetics).

Gower also designed prosthetics for Game of Thrones, including the Night King.

Vanity Fair made a YouTube video on Vecna’s make-up. Gower said that Vecna was given a 15-minute treatment in which he was coated with lubricant to make his skin look "glossy." Anyone who met him on set was surprised to see the result.

Volume one of season four was over. Fans learned that the Upside Down, and Vecna, were the result of a massive fight between Campbell Bower's preVecna character and Millie Bobby Brown’s Eleven.

The series four opening was praised by critics. The Times called it "a brilliantly darker return for horror unlike any other", while The Independent said that the new season was "formulaic" but who cares when the formula is so amazing?

Campbell Bower claims he was forced to infuse Vecna's evil energy via the 25 prosthetics that were attached to his skin.

"I realized that my skin needed to be a layer higher than it was." It had to be able to push through another layer of clothing so that the energy was radiating from the garment itself.

Some scenes were "terrifying", he says, because he realized he had "fill this stage [with my presence]... It was crazy, just crazy."

How did he prepare for being so terrifying?

He says, "I did some things." "I started making a mood board early in the process. It was always with me at all times, no matter where I was or what I was doing. And it has grown over the years."

He took pictures of the characters he would interact with and added them to the show, using a red pen to jot down their images.

"Meditation was also a huge thing. He explains that clearing out my space and allowing anger and resentment through was very interesting to him.

"I spent quite some time on my own, talking the same thing over-and-over, looking into the eyes of the next person on the mood board.

He not only focused on the role mentally but also made sure that everything he saw was related to his character, even his phone background which he transformed into a burning house.

He says, "For those who have already seen season four's first volume, there is obviously a story with Victor." "So I made sure everything I was taking was relevant.

"I put my all into it" - If you don't give 100% to something, your chances of success - feeling satisfied and a sense d accomplishment - are significantly reduced.

"I'm only here once so why not?"

Campbell Bower's soft spoken voice is nothing like that of the sadistic Vecna. What was it like to terrorize his castmates?

He let a smile escape and said: "I'll tell you, it was really enjoyable. Actors are sometimes given power in scenes.

It taps into an interesting side of human psychology, which is "I'm in control now".

"It was a very enjoyable experience, although there were moments when I felt sorry for my team members. We'd give them a gentle touch or a glance in their eyes to let them know that I was there.

"I believe it put quite some people at ease, but some crew members were scared, especially when we started working.

"I was walking around a corner when I bumped into a crewmember. There was a scream coming from the side of stage and I laughed to myself. It was great fun!"

Vecna's arrival coincides with Kate Bush's hypnotic song Running Up That Hill reaching the top of the UK singles charts, 37 years after it was released.

As Max Mayfield, a teenage protagonist (played by Sadie Sink) struggles to cope with the death of her brother, the song is a constant motif.

One pivotal scene shows Vecna trying to infiltrate Max's mind. But Bush saves Max.

Campbell Bower says that her friends realized the best way for her to get out of her current state was to play music to remind her of reality. It's where she feels safe and secure.

"All of a sudden the song starts playing, and it gives her strength and power to overcome that moment. I find this beautiful."

He describes the song as "ethereal", and says that it "just grabs at the emotional core" of who we are. That comes from everyone involved in this process: Kate Bush, the team and everyone. It's amazing."

Campbell Bower is also an accomplished musician and singer. What songs would Campbell Bower listen to to get back to reality?

He smiles, "Goodness me it really depends on how mood I want to feel in," he says.

"Music is a way for me to express a feeling or draw power within myself.

"I was preparing for the show when I discovered that I also really enjoyed Pornography by The Cure. This record gives me a sense of groundedness and brings me back to reality.

He says that "bands like Blink 182 were an inspiration for me", but adds that he loves everything. Everything is my absolute favorite.

He also said that he listened "dark, heavy music that would raise the heart rate" for series four's finale.

"I believe that we are often not aware of the impact music has on our choices. There is a reason supermarkets play music. It forces you to say, "I'm going to buy this now."

"So that's why I'm always interested in it, too."

He also speaks about Stranger Things' scale and "the intelligence and genius of the writing and crew".

He says, "It's an absolute blessing to be here."

"I consider myself fortunate. It's a great group of people who care deeply about creating beautiful things. I often pinch myself. You can't ask for more.

Netflix has Volume 2 of Season 4 of Stranger Things available starting Friday, 1 July.

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