Jenna Ortega Leaves ‘Scream 7’ Production Over Commitment to ‘Wednesday’ Season 2

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Jenna Ortega’s departure from “Scream 7” is due to her commitment to filming the second season of “Wednesday,” rather than being influenced by Melissa Barrera’s dismissal from the movie following her social media posts about Israel and Palestine, as confirmed by Variety.

Reportedly, Ortega had been planning her exit from the project months before the onset of the SAG-AFTRA strike, and her filming schedule for “Wednesday” Season 2 has not yet been officially finalized. Additionally, she also needs to complete filming for Tim Burton’s “Beetlejuice 2,” which was interrupted by the SAG-AFTRA strike and has a few more shooting days remaining.

Both Ortega and Barrera played significant roles as sisters Tara and Sam Carpenter in the 2022 revival of “Scream” and its subsequent sequel, “Scream VI.” Their performances were instrumental in revitalizing the dormant horror franchise, and despite their departure from “Scream 7,” the movie was announced earlier this year with director Christopher Landon at the helm.

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Barrera’s termination from “Scream 7” occurred due to her social media posts expressing support for Palestine during the ongoing conflict with Israel. Spyglass Media Group, the producer of “Scream,” stated to Variety their unequivocal stance against antisemitism or any form of hate speech, citing zero tolerance for references to genocide, ethnic cleansing, Holocaust distortion, or anything that promotes hate.

Following Barrera’s removal, Christopher Landon posted and later deleted a statement expressing discontent, indicating that the decision was not his to make.

The 2022 revival of “Scream” featured the return of original stars Neve Campbell, Courteney Cox, and David Arquette, alongside newcomers Mason Gooding Jr. and Jasmine Savoy Brown. While Campbell declined to return for “Scream 7” due to a pay dispute, directors Matt Bettinelli-Olpin and Tyler Gillet remained hopeful for her potential return in future installments. Notably, the movie concluded positively for the characters played by Ortega and Barrera, as they overcame the Ghostface killer once again and reconciled their relationship.