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Wednesday: Jenna Ortega Opens Up About "Stressful and Confusing" Shoot

On November 23rd, viewers will be introduced to the world of Miles Millar, Al GoughTim Burton's Jenna Ortega (Wednesday Addams), Catherine Zeta-Jones (Morticia Addams), Luis Guzmán (Gomez Addams) & Isaac Ordonez (Pugsley)-starring Wednesday. And from what we've seen from the trailer, teasers, and preview images, it appears our excitement for the series will be well-rewarded. But in an Interview interview with Yellowjackets star; Ortega's co-star & someone who knows a thing or two about Wednesday Addams, Christina Ricci, Ortega revealed some of the difficulties she ran into during the filming of the Netflix series overseas in Romania. From dealing with multiple directors with different takes on her character and having very little time to prepare once arriving to film to "feeling defeated after the first ​​month" and learning to use her voice to protect her vision for the character, here are some of the highlights:

Wednesday. (L to R) Jenna Ortega as Wednesday Addams, Director Tim Burton in Wednesday. Cr. Tomasz Lazar/Netflix © 2022

Wednesday Star Jenna Ortega Discusses Filming Netflix Series

Multiple Directors Meant Multiple Visions & "A Lot of Battles": "Yeah, it was very stressful. I'm so glad you [Ricci] mentioned the 'multiple directors' thing because Tim didn't shoot all of the episodes. We were going from Tim to another director, back to Tim, to another director. I felt like everybody wanted different things from her. I remember Tim did not want me to have any expression or emotion at all. He wanted a flat surface, which I understand. It's funny and great except when you're trying to move a plot along, and Wednesday is in every scene. There were a lot of battles like that because I felt like people didn't always trust me when I was creating my path in terms of, 'Okay, this is her arc. This is where she gets emotional.' And then also, we jump into the first episode, and so much is happening. You have to introduce the whole story. Meanwhile, I'm still finding my footing, and then it's the cello lessons and the archery lessons and this and that."

A "Stressful and Confusing" Shoot Left Ortega Calling Home Every Night: "I would call my parents every night in a panic because I felt like it was different from any job I had ever done before where I typically have that time to sit into the character. I got out to Romania, and we started training and shooting immediately. We didn't really have time for rehearsals. I remember it being very stressful and confusing. I did the best I could, but that's probably the most overwhelming job I've ever had."

Ortega on "Feeling Defeated" After First Month of Filming: "There have never been so many cooks in the kitchen. I was completely lost and confused. Typically I have no problem using my voice, but when you're in it—I just remember feeling defeated after the first ​​month. So I think something really wonderful that has come out of the show is that I can use my voice in a much stronger way than I ever have. I've been so much better about being honest about my opinions and thoughts, which I'm really grateful for."

Ortega Fought to "Protect" Wednesday Addams & Had an Ally in Burton: "It's like a fight, and you get to a point where, when you love and respect a character enough, all you want to do is protect them. Another way they pitched the show to me was, 'Oh, we're trying to humanize her and make her so that she's still relatable. But this isn't like some cartoon.' But it kind of is. I felt like sometimes, in the attempt to make her a human girl, they were trying to make her any other teenage girl. I remember Tim being really wonderful about things like that and calling me to his trailer in the mornings and saying, 'What are you uncomfortable saying? What do you want to say?' When you have supportive collaborators like Tim, it makes it a lot easier. There were a couple people like that on set who were my rocks, for sure.

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Ray FlookAbout Ray Flook

Serving as Television Editor since 2018, Ray began five years earlier as a contributing writer/photographer before being brought onto the core BC team in 2017.
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