Jenna Ortega admitted she had to put her “foot down” multiple times on the set of “Wednesday.”
Ortega, 20, recently revealed that many of the scripts made no sense for her character and she ended up changing the scripts without consulting the writers.
She told “Armchair Expert” podcast host and fellow actor Dax Shepard, 48, that when she first signed onto the show, she didn’t have all of the scripts, so she assumed the series would be “a lot darker” and didn’t know what the tone would be or score would sound like.
But once she read the entire series, Ortega realized it was geared toward a younger audience.
“I don’t think I’ve ever had to put my foot down more on a set in a way that I had to on ‘Wednesday,’” she shared. “Everything that Wednesday does, everything I had to play, did not make sense for her character at all.”
She continued to give examples of some out-of-character moments in the show, revealing: “Her being in a love triangle? It made no sense. There was a line about a dress she has to wear for a school dance and she says, ‘Oh, my God, I love it. Ugh — I can’t believe I said that. I literally hate myself.’ I had to go, ‘No.’
“There were times on that set where I even became almost unprofessional in a sense where I just started changing lines,” Ortega admitted. “The script supervisor thought I was going with something and then I had to sit down with the writers, and they’d be like, ‘Wait, what happened to the scene?’ And I’d have to go and explain why I couldn’t go do certain things.”
The “Scream VI” star ultimately wanted her character to have more depth, and she grew “very, very protective” of the Wednesday role.
“You can’t lead a story and have no emotional arc because then it’s boring and nobody likes you. When you are little and say very morbid, offensive stuff, it’s funny and endearing. But then you become a teenager and it’s nasty 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 the show finding an audience while she was shooting.
“I can’t watch my work, but I can go home from set and say, ‘The scene that we shot today felt good,’” Ortega shared. “On ‘Wednesday,’ there was not a scene in that show that I went home and was like, ‘OK, that should be fine.’”
She also admitted that she doesn’t want to be known mainly for her role in the Addams family series.
“Now a lot of people know me from [‘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 want but I don’t want to be known specifically for that,” she said.
Ortega, who is ELLE’s April 2023 cover star, told the magazine that she is “so fearful” of disappointing people and not living up to people’s expectations.
“I want to live up to people’s expectations, which is something that I need to get over, but I’m also scared that, I don’t know, maybe someone will get to know me too well and realize that I’m not all that,” she told ELLE.
While she said she sometimes feels disbelief when complimented, she also allows the praise to encourage her to find her own voice in the industry.
“The kind words that I hear that they say about me through other people are unbelievable to me. I feel like just the people in my life see me in a way that I don’t really see myself,” she shared.
Tim Burton, director and executive producer of “Wednesday,” told ELLE that Ortega has the lead character “in her soul.”
“You have to kind of ‘be’ Wednesday, and that’s what Jenna is,” Burton said. “Whether she likes it or not, she’s got that in her soul, 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.
By: Ny Post