Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa Details Developing Chilling Adventures of Sabrina

Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa debuted Riverdale back in 2017, surprising fans with how effectively he turned the lighthearted Archie Comics into a compelling murder mystery, earning him the opportunity to develop Chilling Adventures of Sabrina for Netflix. Much like Riverdale, Sabrina was a much more mature affair than what most fans were expecting, with the series depicting Kiernan Shipka as the teen witch and her many encounters with all manner of otherworldly beings. With Part Three of the series debuting on Friday, Chilling Adventures of Sabrina fans are primed to see the continued adventures of the characters and the way the show seamlessly blends lighthearted humor with horror.

Unlike Riverdale and virtually any other series on TV, Sabrina's visual style has employed sequences in which only the figures in the center of the image are in focus, while everything towards the edge of the frame begins to blur.

"That was something that the director of the pilot, Lee Toland Krieger, really thought would be a great way to shoot the supernatural elements," the series creator revealed to "It's something that started in the pilot and that we still use when we shoot the more heightened moments of witchcraft. It was his idea, for sure. And I think we've really refined how we use it and it's become a kind of our hallmark."

Only weeks after the first season premiered, it was renewed through a fourth season. The creator went on to detail how the series both has and hasn't deviated from his original plans for its overall narrative trajectory.

"It's a really good question. I think we are always thinking about what happens next with the characters," Aguirre-Sacasa admitted. "Or where do we go next? For me, I would think about what's at the core of a character. And I think for Sabrina, to need what's at the heart of her character, is her duality. And we explored that in Part One with Sabrina. Really trying to hold onto her humanity and her mortal friends. And then in Part Two, we explored her witchy side and went a little bit into embracing and exploring that. And for Part Three, when we were talking about it, it felt like, 'Oh, it would be really good if Sabrina got in deeper both in the mortal world and in the horror infernal world.'"

He continued, "So we very early on landed on the idea of a cheerleader by day, queen of Hell by night. And I love pagan horror and folk horror like The Wicker Man or, even more recently, the movie Midsommar. That was always the kind of horror that I wanted to get to play with and infuse into Part Three. There was an evolution that always happens, but a lot of the stuff that we set out to explore, we explored even from the early days. We knew that we wanted Sabrina to be in the cheerleading uniform. We knew we wanted her to be on the throne of Hell. And so that was something that we talked about."

As evidenced by trailers and promotional materials for the upcoming Part Three, fans have already seen evidence of those Midsommar and Wicker Man tributes.

"We kind of wear our homages and influences on our sleeve on Sabrina," the creator confessed. "It's a love letter to everything I love in horror and it's such a great playground because you could bring in all those elements and ... somehow we can reference The Wicker Man and we can reference Bring It On and somehow it all holds together, which I think is the uniqueness and the specialness of the show and the character."


Chilling Adventures of Sabrina Part Three debuts on Netflix on January 24th.

Are you looking forward to the new episodes? Let us know in the comments below or contact Patrick Cavanaugh directly on Twitter to talk all things Star Wars and horror!