‘Wednesday’ Star Jenna Ortega Gets Candid About Intense Filming Schedule

A Golden Globe-nominated performance as Wednesday Addams didn’t come easily for Jenna Ortega. The actress said she cried hysterically and even pulled her hair during long days on the Netflix series Wednesday.

“It was show up to set two hours early, do that 12- to 14-hour day, then go home and then get on a Zoom and have whatever lesson that I had. Or show up to my apartment, [and] my cello teacher was already waiting for me,” Ortega said at a Netflix-hosted Q&A panel on February 9, per Variety. “It was just constantly going, and if you could on a weekend, if we weren’t shooting the sixth day that week, it was ‘All right, well then, we’ll get your lessons in on that day.’”

The 20-year-old added that she studied fencing and cello before and during the first season’s eight-month shoot in Romania. “I did not get any sleep. I pulled my hair out,” Ortega said. “There’s so many FaceTime calls that my dad answered of me hysterically crying.”

Ortega also said that as cast and crew neared their deadline for Season 1, she couldn’t appear in every shot that required her character. “They had to start using stunt doubles or occasionally cello doubles if they didn’t have time to get hands, but I was very adamant about being as well-prepared as possible because I wanted them to be able to use myself, because that’s so much more believable if you could see your face.”

The actress told NME in November that she filmed her now-viral Wednesday dance scene while sick with COVID-19.

“Yeah, I woke up and — it’s weird, I never get sick and when I do, it’s not very bad — I had the body aches. I felt like I’d been hit by a car and that a little goblin had been let loose in my throat and was scratching the walls of my esophagus. They were giving me medicine between takes because we were waiting on the positive result. … I asked to redo [the dance] but we didn’t have time. I think I probably could have done it a bit better.”

Production company MGM Television told NME that “strict COVID protocols were followed, and once the positive test was confirmed, production removed Jenna from set,” but fans have nevertheless criticized the production keeping Ortega on set after she exhibited COVID symptoms, as BuzzFeed News reported in December.

Wednesday, Streaming now, Netflix

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