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Jenna Ortega Paid Homage to the OG Wednesday Addams Lisa Loring



Lisa Loring, best known for her portrayal of Wednesday Addams in The Addams Family sitcom, has died at age 64. The talented actor suffered a massive stroke caused by high blood pressure and, after three days on life support, ultimately lost her life. Chris Carbaugh, Loring’s agent, confirmed the news in a statement to CNN. “She brought to life one of the most iconic characters in Hollywood history that is still celebrated today,” Carbaugh shared. “Lisa loved sharing her memories and meeting all her fans across the world.” Among her fans is undoubtedly Jenna Ortega, who recently reimagined Wednesday for a new generation.

Lisa Loring as Wednesday Addams | ABC Photo Archives/ABC via Getty Image

Lisa Loring originated the role of Wednesday Addams for TV

Though Ortega has gotten her fair share of attention lately for her portrayal of the pigtailed character, it was Loring who actually originated the character. Prior to her performance in the iconic sitcom, Wednesday was merely an unnamed character in a newspaper drawing. It was Loring who brought Wednesday to life, giving her the deadpan delivery and dark disposition that she became known for.

Both Christina Ricci and Jenna Ortega used Loring as inspiration for their characters

Over the years, actors have used Loring’s performance as inspiration for their own renditions of the iconic character. Christina Ricci, who played the character in the films The Addams Family and Addams Family Values, and Ortega both adopted a dry and sarcastic way of delivering their lines. Their costumes were also often a callback to what Loring wore whilst originating the iconic character.

Ortega honored Loring in ‘Wednesday’s’ iconic dance scene

But Ortega also paid tribute to Loring in another memorable way. Fans of the Netflix series, Wednesday likely recall the scene of Wednesday busting a move at the Rave’N school dance. Turns out Ortega choreographed it herself. While she took inspiration for the choreography from a lot of sources, she made sure to honor Loring in her performance as well. In the original sitcom, Loring’s Wednesday is seen dancing by doing an adorable leg shuffle. Ortega managed to ensure that her Wednesday mimicked that unique dance also.


“I knew there were certain things I wanted to do,” Ortega shared while talking about the dance on The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon.” I paid homage to Lisa Loring, the first Wednesday Addams. I did a little bit of her shuffle that she does. Of course, they cut out of camera when I did do it, but it’s there! I know it is!”

Loring helped to create a timeless character

The distinctive move certainly is there for hawkeyed Wednesday fans to spot. And while Ortega may have introduced the pigtailed character to a new generation, it’s beautiful that she chose to pay her respects to the woman who started it all. Without Loring, Ortega’s character could not exist the way she currently does. The talented actor certainly helped breathe life into a character that continues to enrapture audiences decade after decade. Loring will be dearly missed by family, friends, and fans alike.

Source: Cheat Sheet

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