Wednesday’s Jenna Ortega Criticizes Writing on Netflix Series

Image: Netflix

Jenna Ortega (Scream VI) sat down with Dax Shepherd for an episode of his podcast Armchair Expertand revealed more than a few disappointing memories of working on Netflix’s Tim Burton-produced series Wednesday. Ortega said she frequently changed lines, refused to act according to the script, and admitted she “became unprofessional” because she believed the material she had been given was torturously bad.

“I don’t think I’ve ever had to put my foot on set the way I had to Wednesday‘ said the actor. “I grew very, very protective of it [Wednesday the character], but you can’t lead a story and have an emotional arc because then it’s boring and no one likes you. Ortega didn’t have high hopes for the show’s reception, saying modern-day viewers are “easy to please” due to the sheer volume of content that ships so quickly. (If ever there was an interview with an actor it was one of the reviews of io9it’s this one.)

As it turns out, Wednesday was a huge Netflix success, and it is credited with vastly raising Ortega’s profile. Still, the actress doesn’t have much positive to say about her experience on set. “I can’t look at my work, but I can go home from the set and say, ‘The scene we shot today felt good.’ On Wednesdaythere wasn’t a scene on that show where I went home and thought, ‘OK, that should be good.’” Ortega has said in previous interviews that the long hours and extensive training she put in took a huge toll on her, and had her “crying hysterically”, according to Variety. (As has been widely reported, she sang the show’s viral dance number while unknowingly sick with covid.)

Ortega took particular offense at the writing. She said on the podcast, “Everything she does, everything I had to play just wasn’t right for her character at all.” Regarding Wednesday’s sarcastic sense of humor, Ortega said, “When you’re little and say morbid, insulting things, it’s funny and endearing and, ‘Aww, you don’t know any better.’ But then when you become a teenager, it’s, “Now you’re mean and you know it.” There is less excuse.”

Wednesday has been renewed for season two, with Jenna Ortega on board as producer and star.

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