I became ‘unprofessional’ on ‘Wednesday’ set
Jenna Ortega admitted she had to put her “foot down” a few times on the set of “Wednesday.”
Ortega, 20, recently revealed that many scripts didn’t make sense for her character and she changed scripts without consulting the writers.
He told “Armchair Expert” podcast Host and fellow actor Dax Shepard, 48, said he didn’t have all the scripts when he first signed on to the show, so he admitted the series would be “much darker” and he didn’t know what the tone would be. Or so the score would read.
But once he read the entire series, Ortega felt it was geared toward a younger audience.
“I don’t think I’ve ever had to put my foot down on set the way I had to on ‘Wednesday,'” he shared. “Everything that worked on Wednesday, everything that I had to play, didn’t make sense at all for his character.”
He continued to give examples of some out-of-character moments on the show, revealing: “His being in a love triangle? It didn’t make any sense. There was a line about a dress she has to wear to a school dance and she says, ‘Oh, my God, I love it. A – I can’t believe I said that. I literally hate myself.’ I had to go, ‘No.’
“There were times on that set where I became almost unprofessional in a sense where I just started changing lines,” Ortega admitted. “The script supervisor thought I was going to take something and then I’d have to sit down with the writers, and they’d be like, ‘Wait, what happened to the scene?’ And I have to go and explain why I couldn’t go to do some work.”
The “Scream VI” star ultimately wanted her character to have more depth, and became “very, very protective” of Wednesday’s role.
“You can’t lead the story and have no emotional arc because it’s boring and nobody likes you. When you’re young and say mean, offensive things, it’s funny and cute. But then you become a teenager and it’s dirty and you know it. There’s less of an excuse,” Ortega explained.
Now, “Wednesday” is Netflix’s second-biggest English-language series of all time — but Ortega didn’t have much faith in finding an audience during filming.
“I can’t see my work, but I can go home from set and say, ‘The scene we shot today felt good,'” Ortega shared. “On ‘Wednesday,’ there wasn’t a scene in that show that I went home and was like, ‘Okay, this should be fine’.”
She also admitted that she does not want to be known primarily for her role in the Addams Family series.
“Many people know me now [‘Wednesday’]. It’s not my proudest moment internally, which I think also adds an extra level of insecurity and stress, because it’s like, now I’m finally getting these offers or these places that I’ve been Want to but I don’t want to be particularly known for it. ,” she said.
Ortega, that is ELLE’s April 2023 cover startold the magazine that she was “so afraid” of disappointing people and not living up to people’s expectations.
“I want to live up to people’s expectations, which I need to fulfill, but I’m also afraid that, I don’t know, maybe someone will get to know me well and realize that I’m not. . All of that,” she told ELLE.
While she said she sometimes feels insecure about receiving compliments, she also allows the accolades to encourage her to find her voice in the industry.
“The kind words I hear other people say about me are unbelievable to me. I feel like the people in my life see me in a way that I don’t see myself,” she shared.
Tim Burton, director and executive producer of “Wednesday,” told ELLE that Ortega’s lead character is “in her soul.”
“You have to ‘be’ on Wednesday, and that’s what Jenna is,” Burton said. “Whether she likes it or not, she is in her spirit and as a person.”
“Wednesday” is currently streaming on Netflix and was recently renewed for a second season, where Ortega will serve as an executive producer.