Jenna Ortega Update: Creators of Hit Teen Series Make It Impossible for ‘Wednesday’ Star To Return

in Movies & TV

Jenna Ortega covered in blood in 'Wednesday'

Credit: Netflix

Though her popularity and Hollywood status show no signs of waning, Jenna Ortega has exited two massive blockbuster franchises over the past year (both of which have already replaced her).

Last year, following the firing of co-star Melissa Barrera, who shared a controversial social media post regarding the ongoing Israel-Hamas war, Ortega, who plays Barrera’s on-screen sister in Scream (2022) and Scream VI (2023), dropped out of Scream 7 (TBA).

The reasons still aren’t clear: some sources say it was due to scheduling conflicts, others claim Ortega tried to get a bigger paycheque from the studio, Spyglass Media Group.

Melissa Barrera and Jenna Ortega hiding in a convenience store in 'Scream VI'
Credit: Radio Silence Productions / Paramount Pictures / Spyglass Media Group

Related: Jenna Ortega’s Hit Netflix Series Confirmed To Continue Without Her Following Shock Exit

Now, she has also exited another popular teen series — the animated series Jurassic World: Chaos Theory (2024), which recently premiered on Netflix, having played the character Brooklynn in the previous show, Jurassic World: Camp Cretaceous (2020 — 2022).

Showrunners Scott Kreamer and Aaron Hammersley revealed in an interview with IGN that Ortega’s “busy schedule” made it “impossible” for her to return to the recording studio.

The 'Camp Cretaceous' kids (including Jenna Ortega's Brooklynn, right) in the jungle
Credit: Universal Studios / DreamWorks / Animation Television / Amblin Entertainment / Netflix

But Ortega has pressed on with her career seamlessly. Later this year, she’ll be appearing in the long-awaited sequel Beetlejuice, Beetlejuice (2024), and soon, she’ll be reprising her role as Wednesday Addams in the second season of the hit Netflix series Wednesday (2022).

But even with the Wednesday star no longer attached to Scream in any way, fans are interested to see how the slasher sequel will move forward without her.

Jenna Ortega as Wednesday Addams, with Thing on her shoulder
Credit: Netflix

Following Ortega’s exit, legacy star Neve Campbell announced that she’ll be returning to play “final girl” Sidney Prescott in the seventh film. Campbell has portrayed Sidney in every Scream movie except for last year’s sequel, which was due to a salary dispute with the studio.

As part of her announcement, Campbell also revealed that the new film will be directed by Kevin Williamson, the writer behind Scream (1996), Scream 2 (1997), and Scream 4 (2011), who replaces Christopher Landon after he was the third to bow out of the troubled project.

Sidney Prescott (Neve Campbell) in 'Scream 2022'
Credit: Radio Silence Productions / Paramount Pictures / Spyglass Media Group

Related: Neve Campbell May Not Play Sidney in ‘Scream 7’ Despite Surprise Cast Announcement

Needless to say, Scream 7 will be a completely different film than originally intended. And how it will handle the absence of sisters Sam Carpenter (Melissa Barrera) and Tara Carpenter (Jenna Ortega), who led the way in the last two movies, remains to be seen.

However, a new report from Hollywood insider Daniel Richtman (via CBR.com) claims that Scream 7 will make a big time jump as it will focus on the children of Sidney Prescott. Critical Overlord (via @DanielRPK) shared the below tweet on X (formerly Twitter):

“SCREAM VII’ will reportedly have a big time jump for Sidney’s kids to play a role.

It’s intended to be the start of a new trilogy.”

In the legacy sequel Scream (2022), we see Sidney with a baby while she’s on the phone with Dewey Riley (David Arquette), which suggests that Scream 7 will need to make a substantial leap forward to find the Prescott children (presumably) during their teenage years.

The report adds that, if successful, Scream 7 will use these new characters to kickstart a new trilogy. But this means there will be a massive gap between the most recent film, Scream VI (2023), and the upcoming sequel, which would push last year’s installment into the past, leaving Melissa Barrera and Jenna Ortega’s potential return in a future movie impossible.

Melissa Barrerra and Jenna Ortega on the street in 'Scream 6'
Credit: Radio Silence Productions / Paramount Pictures / Spyglass Media Group

Meanwhile, actors Courteney Cox, who has played cutthroat journalist Gale Weathers in every film so far, and Patrick Dempsey, who played homicide detective Mark Kincade in Scream 3 (and goes on to become Sidney’s off-screen husband), are rumored to return.

In Scream, anyone can come back. Scream (2022) and Scream VI saw the return of Ghostface killer Billy Loomis (in the form of a hallucination, with Skeet Ulrich reprising his role in de-aged form). And, before the release of the sixth film last year, fans expected Matthew Lillard to reprise his role as the original film’s second Ghostface killer, Stu Macher, despite having been killed off in the 1996 film.

Anything is possible in this franchise. But if this new rumor is true, seeing Jenna Ortega return to the fold isn’t.

Will you be watching Scream 7 without Jenna Ortega? Let Inside the Magic know in the comments down below!

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