It's hard to deny that Stranger Things has become a bonafide pop-culture phenomenon. The Netflix original series has mashed up nostalgia, horror, and epic performances to make a genuine hit, with its ensemble cast becoming stars almost overnight. For Natalia Dyer, who portrays Nancy Wheeler on the series, that fame has had an interesting effect on how she deals with fan interactions. In a recent interview with InStyle, Dyer revealed that she politely declines requests for selfies from fans of Stranger Things, and offers to have a conversation with them instead. Dyer explained that it took her some time to figure out that response, and that she still walks away feeling "really weird" about saying that to fans.
“I mean sometimes, this is what I want to say: It’s for my mental health,” Dyer explained. “I always know that I would rather talk to [a fan], and the exchange of the photo thing — you feel like a commodity in a way. For both of us in the interaction I'm like, ‘this is going to be so much better, I promise.’”
While not everyone will probably agree with Dyer's reasoning, the idea of focusing on a lasting in-person reaction as opposed to a brief exchange of a selfie is absolutely admirable. And given just how many fans Dyer probably has through Stranger Things, it's definitely admirable.
“Some people are so good at [being in the public eye].” Dyer added. “Some people love it and they're so good at it, and that's lovely. I envy it sometimes, but I don't know.”
“Hopefully I just become more confident moving through the world regardless of it, in a way," Dyer continued. "I think it was such a shock to my late teens, early 20’s self where you're just like, ‘Who am I?’ And then it was like, I really have to figure it out because everybody's looking at me.”
When it comes to Stranger Things - which halted production earlier this year due to the current COVID-19 pandemic - Dyer hinted that this time away could be a blessing in disguise.
"I think we were just maybe a few weeks into filming. I was still kind of getting used to it and finding the flow of it and getting my body used to waking up at whatever hour," Dyer explained in a recent interview. "Yeah, it was wild. At first, it was like, 'Okay, we’re going to go on a two-week hiatus,' and then, it was like, 'Okay, we’re really going to go on a hiatus.' So, yeah, it’s kind of wild to think about because it’s something that you look forward to so much, and there’s so much preparation and excitement around it. And then, we start and stop. And now, it's been quite a while. But I’m very, very excited for when we do go back. I’m excited by the scripts. I’m excited for everything that this season is going to be. But yeah, it’s an interesting time to be in this industry, for sure."
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