Jenna Ortega Will Not Return for ‘Scream 7’
Ghostface is going to have to find a bunch of new characters to menace in Scream VII — the cast of the upcoming sequel has now apparently lost both of its main stars.
One day after news broke that franchise lead Melissa Barrera had been dismissed from the seventh Scream movie over her comments on social media about the Israel-Hamas War, Deadline now reports that Jenna Ortega has departed the movie as well. According their sources, the two are not related, but rather because Ortega is committed to shooting the second season of Netflix’s Wednesday, and the production of it and Scream VII will overlap.
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In Scream and Scream VI, Ortega played Tara, the half-sister of Barrera’s Sam, the central figure in the return of Ghostface. (Sam’s father turns out to be Billy Loomis, one of the original Ghostfaces, and she is literally and metaphorically haunted by him and his actions in both films.)
Given Ortega’s rising stardom thanks to Wednesday, you could have conceivably built a Scream sequel around her instead of Barrera. But now that won’t happen either. That puts the new film, which was to be directed by Happy Death Day’s Christopher Landon, in a really tough spot. The film will need to either recast one or both of those roles or introduce a new core cast and come up with a reason for Ghostface to return yet again to terrorize that cast. The only legacy cast member still regularly appearing in the Scream movies at this point is Courteney Cox. Neve Campbell chose not to return for Scream VI, although if she wanted to be in the new one, she’s now got a heck of a bargaining position for a new contract.
Landon commented on the news on his X/Twitter account, writing “This is my statement: 💔 Everything sucks. Stop yelling. This was not my decision to make.” He later deleted the post.
In addition to Wednesday, Ortega will also star in the upcoming sequel Beetlejuice 2 from director Tim Burton. That film is due in theaters on September 6, 2024. That movie has yet to resume production following the conclusion of the actors’ strike.
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