For adult fans of The Addams Family, the vast majority probably know Wednesday Addams from Christina Ricci‘s indelible portrayal in two different Addams Family movies. Thankfully, Ricci does have a part in Netflix’s upcoming spinoff series, Wednesday. However, the leading role now belongs to emerging scream queen, Jenna Ortega. In a new featurette for the show, Ortega and the Wednesday creative team highlight their take on the leading character. And paradoxically, Wednesday is more like herself than ever.
The key point of departure from Addams Family lore is that Wednesday is presented as a high school student in this incarnation. She’s older, and she still has a taste for the macabre. But Ortega intentionally plays Wednesday with a touch of social anxiety around her peers. Wednesday isn’t lacking in confidence or her signature dry sense of humor. Regardless, she’s not entirely ready to enter the world of Nevermore Academy.
Ortega notes that she trained in cello and fencing to convincingly portray Wednesday’s extracurricular activities on screen. Director Tim Burton and executive producers Alfred Gough and Miles Millar also rave about Ortega’s performance and what she brings to the lead character. Ricci may still be the audience’s favorite Wednesday, but we suspect that Ortega will have many converts by the time this show is done.
It just wouldn’t be an Addams Family series without the actual family. That’s why Wednesday also features Catherine Zeta-Jones as Morticia Addams, Luis Guzmán as Gomez Addams, Isaac Ordonez as Pugsley Addams, George Burcea as Lurch, and Victor Dorobantu as Thing.
Other cast members include Riki Lindhome as Dr. Valerie Kinbott, Jamie McShane as Sheriff Donovan Galpin, Hunter Doohan as Tyler Galpin, Georgie Farmer as Ajax Petropolus, Moosa Mostafa as Eugene Otinger, Emma Myers as Enid Sinclair, Naomi J. Ogawa as Yoko Tanaka, Joy Sunday as Bianca Barclay, Percy Hynes White as Xavier Thorpe, and Gwendoline Christie as Larissa Weems.
Wednesday will premiere this fall on Netflix.