Netflix hit “Wednesday”: That’s why Jenna Ortega doesn’t blink once in the horror comedy series

© Netflix

With “Wednesday” Netflix landed a hit. And that’s largely down to Jenna Ortega’s brilliant performance, which has a twist.

Tim Burton’s Netflix debut “Wednesday” was streamed over 341.2 million hours in one week, directly replacing the previous leader “Stranger Things” as the most streamed English-language series. Well deserved, one has to say. Conceived by showrunners Alfred Gough and Miles Millar (“Smallville”), the darkly humorous horror series is made for Burton, who produces and directs four of the eight episodes.

Based on the cartoon series “The Addams Family” created by artist Charles Addams, the new Netflix series Wednesday Addams takes center stage and follows her adventures at Nevermore Academy. Burton is in his element here and you can feel the influence of the master of the macabre even in the episodes directed by James Marshall and Gandja Monteiro.

Burton’s team has really thought of all the (subtle) details in order to constantly exhaust the unsettlingly morbid atmosphere and keep it at its maximum. An example hides in Wednesday Addams herself (Jenna Ortega). You may have noticed, but she never blinks in the entire series. Netflix revealed why in a tweet:

So it’s no wonder that even as a viewer you have the feeling that Wednesday’s gaze is literally piercing you. Normally, a human blinks every five seconds. The body thus ensures a stable tear film that moistens the cornea and protects it from drying out. In addition, the finest particles are wiped away and flushed out through the tear duct. As an innate and natural reflex, it is not at all easy to consciously leave your eyes open for a certain period of time and not to blink.

Hats off to Ortega for taking this upon himself to fulfill Burton’s vision and live up to her role. However, on closer inspection, the good one gave in to the reflex and blinked once or twice. Then repeating the whole scene was probably not worth it for the team. And if you haven’t seen “Wednesday” yet, here’s the trailer in the video.
© Netflix

“Wednesday”: Jenna Ortega deliberately did not seek advice from Christina Ricci
Fans of Barry Sonnenfeld’s ‘Addams Family’ movies from the ’90s should be delighted to see Christina Ricci as Marylin Thornhill in ‘Wednesday’. The 42-year-old played the death-fascinated Wednesday in the two films, who loves to scare people and seek her brother Pugsley’s life. While Ortega knew, she deliberately refrained from asking Ricci on set about her old role or even asking her for advice, as she revealed to Collider:

“I think when [Christina Ricci] was on set, neither of us even said Wednesday to each other. I don’t think she wanted to get in the way of my performance and feel overly intrusive. I felt like I didn’t want to tie into something she did 30 years ago. Firstly for my benefit, but secondly because I didn’t want to copy her and wanted to be too much like her.”

The plan definitely worked: Ortega’s Wednesday is a successful reinterpretation in the spirit of the original. Fans can be pretty sure that Netflix Season 2 will be ordering very soon.

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