Who is Jenna Ortega? Meet horror's new scream queen

Jenna Ortega is getting ready to sport the iconic Wednesday Addams pigtails for a new Netflix series

jenna ortega at the mtv movie and tv awards
(Image credit: Polk/Getty Images for MTV)

For all things creepy, kooky and spooky—and adorable, too—Jenna Ortega delivers. 

The up-and-coming actor is making a dent in the horror genre and will soon star in the Tim Burton Netflix YA series, Wednesday Addams

"The way I interact with the world—my work, interacting with people, decision-making—comes from a place of love and light," Oretga told Penguin Random House (opens in new tab)

Even if her cameos are a little more blood and guts rather than love and light, this is one star you'll want to keep an eye on. Chances are she's already in one of your favorite scary movies on Netflix

Who is Jenna Ortega?

Born in 2002 in Coachella Valley, California, Ortega got her star in Hollywood quite young. At 9 years old, she had a role in Disney's Stuck in the Middle. For those who love our nostalgic TV shows list, you might've recognized her as young Jane from Jane the Virgin, too. 

Not only is the youngster known behind the screen, but she's an author, too. She wrote IT'S ALL LOVE: Reflections for Your Heart and Soul (opens in new tab), a book that is a mixture of spirituality and self-help. It's about her journey as a POC in Hollywood who's had to overcome depression, heartbreak and life as a childhood actor. 

You might've even seen her while out shopping, as she partnered with American Eagle in 2021. 

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How old is Jenna Ortega?

Jenna was born on September 27, 2002, which makes her 19 years old—and a Libra.

Jenna Ortega movies and TV shows

In addition to Stuck in the Middle and Jane the Virgin, Ortega played Darcy on the Netflix series Richie Rich. In 2020, she took a turn for the scary with a role in The Babysitter: Killer Queen. 

Fans of horror have spotted her in Scream, X, Studio 666, and You, so clearly she is well suited for the spooky. 

"I tend to do a lot of horror, but even my horror films I think are pretty different in themselves, which is enough for me and also keeps me on my toes and I think forces me to work in a different way or exercise a muscle in a different way," she told Complex (opens in new tab). "And I love a challenge. That’s what it comes down to when I’m choosing new projects."

She just won the Most Frightened Performance award for Scream at The MTV Movie & TV Awards 2022!

Jenna Ortega as Wednesday Addams

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In fall 2022—although a date has yet to be revealed—Ortega will put on her white collar, get her pigtails ready and step into the moody shoes of the beloved Wednesday Addams. 

“The series is a sleuthing, supernaturally infused mystery charting Wednesday Addams’ years as a student at Nevermore Academy," Netflix said in a release, and we can't wait to become acquainted with this new side of an iconic character. 

The release continued: Wednesday "attempts to master her emerging psychic ability, thwart a monstrous killing spree that has terrorized the local town and solve the supernatural mystery that embroiled her parents 25 years ago—all while navigating her new and very tangled relationships at Nevermore.”

Even a Wednesday Addams of yesteryear—Cristina Ricci—will make an appearance in the YA series. 

We can't wait to see what's next for Ortega: scary or otherwise!

Danielle Valente

Danielle is a writer for woman&home and My Imperfect Life, covering all-things news, lifestyle and entertainment. 

The heart of her time at Future has been devoted to My Imperfect Life, where she's been attuned to the cosmos, new TV shows and relationship trends.  

Before her time at Future, Danielle was the editor of Time Out New York Kids and a news editor at Elite Daily. Her work has also appeared in Domino, Chowhound, amNewYork and Newsday, among other outlets. 

When Danielle is not working, you can usually find her reading a book, coffee at hand, or attempting a new recipe. (Recommendations always welcome!)