Taking on a role made iconic by another actor is a challenge at the best of times, let alone when that actor is performing alongside you. When you think of Wednesday Addams, you probably think of Christina Ricci’s wonderful deadpan performance in Barry Sonnenfeld’s The Addams Family and Addams Family Valuesbut now it’s Jenna Ortega’s time to shine.
Jenna Ortega stars Wednesday, Tim Burton’s upcoming series for Netflix, which focuses on a teenage Wednesday Addams and her time as a student at Nevermore Academy. As it happens, Christina Ricci is also a part of cast, although the nature of her character remains a mystery. While talking to empirerevealed Ortega how scared she was when she found out she would be sharing the screen with Christina Ricci in the Wednesday.
“I felt like I was really having a panic attack when I was toldOrtega said. “I was terrified. She is a really cool lady. I was fine meeting her, but the first time we did a scene together and she got to see me finished like she finished 30 years ago, it was nerve-wracking.” Considering how perfectly Ricci played the part all those years ago, Ortega added that it was “It’s really important to me that I don’t cheat anyone. Christina Ricci’s performance is flawlessly executed. It’s pitch perfect and I wouldn’t change a thing about it, which is another reason why it was hard for me to do this job.” Although it is difficult to follow in Ricci’s footsteps, Ortega said that the new series will give us a Wednesday that we have never seen before. “We never saw Wednesday as a teenage girl,Ortega said. “As you get older and you say these sarcastic, bitchy one-liners, it can seem less charming and more rude or obnoxious. It was something I was really careful about.“
In addition to Jenna Ortega and Christina Ricci, Wednesday also starring Luis Guzmán as Gomez Addams and Catherine Zeta-Jones as Morticia Addams, as well as Gwendoline Christie, Riki Lindhome, Jamie McShane and more. All eight episodes of Wednesday will debut on Netflix on 23 November.