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David Harbour Explains How ‘Stranger Things’ Role Prepared Him for Stepparenting Lily Allen’s Kids

Perfect timing. David Harbour’s Stranger Things character, Jim Hopper, changed his perspective on starting a family of his own.

Related: Celebrity Stepparents: Heather Rae Young and More

“I’m very much a New York sort of city rat,” the actor, 46, said during the Wednesday, July 28, episode of the “That Scene With Dan Patrick” podcast. “I liked my freedom, my independence. And then it was really this part that did change a lot of that. The show sort of opened my heart in a lot of different ways. And one of the ways [was that] it made me realize how thin my existence was without a family.”

The New York native noted that Hopper becomes a father figure for Millie Bobby Brown’s character, Eleven, on the show. “The fact that this guy was maturing into a father, it’s sort of something my subconscious was crying out to do,” the Emmy nominee said. “I think there was something in Hopper that had a deep need in family. And there was something in me that had it too that I wasn’t aware of. [This] role allowed me to do that in my real life.”

Related: Famous Fathers Who Had Kids Late in Life

The Hellboy star officially became a stepdad in September 2020 when he married Lily Allen. The singer, 36, previously welcomed Ethel, 9, and Marnie, 8, with her then-husband, Sam Cooper.

David Harbour Stranger Things Prepared Him for Stepparenting Lily Allen
Lily Allen and David Harbour Evan Agostini/Invision/AP/Shutterstock

One month after their nuptials, the England native told the Sunday Times that she “think[s]” she wants to have babies with Harbour.

“Especially now [that] Marnie is getting so big,” Allen said in October 2020. “It’s like, ‘No, my babies!’”

Barbour gushed about Ethel and Marnie during an Ellen DeGeneres Show appearance last month, saying, “They’re British and I’m this cheese-fed American man and they really do like the fact they have an extra jungle gym. They crawl all over me; they make it their job to try to hurt me as much as they can. My lower back is destroyed.”

David Harbour Stranger Things Prepared Him for Stepparenting
David Harbour Matt Baron/Shutterstock

The Golden Globe nominee went on to gush about his “beautiful” relationship with the little ones in the June interview.

Related: Putting the Kids 1st! These Former Celeb Couples Are Crushing Coparenting

“I was always a single guy who has been a bachelor for a long time. I’ve been an artist, I wanted to travel the world and do my work,” the Black Widow star continued. “I never really wanted to have kids. And I get it now, why everybody has kids. Because it’s kind of like the meaning of life, you pass the torch to these other individuals. You love them more than you could ever love yourself, and I never thought that was possible with anyone — I love myself a lot. But it’s such a beautiful thing. My heart is just broken wide open, and I have a new love I never had.”

David Harbour Stranger Things Prepared Him for Stepparenting 2
Millie Bobby Brown and David Harbour in ‘Stranger Things.’ Courtesy of Netflix

He and Allen started dating in 2019, one year after the Grammy nominee split from Cooper, 43.

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