Tim Burton on casting Wednesday’s Morticia and Gomez

Wednesday Addams: Jenna Ortega stars in trailer

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Based on the classic comic strips, TV series and movies, the iconic Addams Family is back on screens once again, this time helmed by iconic gothic mastermind, Tim Burton. With all eight episodes of his deliciously dark new series now on Netflix, the acclaimed director has explained why unconventional pairing Catherine Zeta-Jones and Luis Guzmán were chosen to portray the parents of sinister teen Wednesday (played by Jenna Ortega).

The director revealed why he decided to take a slightly different approach when casting the iconic Addams Family for his new series, Wednesday.

Scream queen Jenna takes on the fan-favourite role once embodied by Christina Ricci for the new drama which separates the psychic teen from the rest of her family.

Although it takes its cues from the original comics by Charles Addams, Netflix’s revamp throws Wednesday headfirst into a brand new adventure when she’s sent to Nevermore Academy.

However, the series has remained faithful to the source material in a number of ways, primarily with its casting.

“We were very lucky to get Catherine and Luis,” Tim explained.

“We were going back to the drawings in the sense that they’re a beautifully mismatched couple who are in love.”

In Charles’ original strips, Wednesday’s mother Morticia is tall and elegant in comparison to Gomez, her squat and somewhat grotesque husband.

Luis’ casting as the Addams patriarch came as some surprise to fans who were more familiar with Raul Julia’s rather dashing portrayal of Morticia’s doting husband.

However, Tim maintained: “That’s what I loved about it. They’re such a striking, mismatched pair.”

He also revealed he took inspiration from his view of his own parents when the casting decisions were made.

“I remember that feeling,” he recalled in his interview with Netflix. “And I think a lot of kids are embarrassed by their parents.

“And so you see this image of Catherine and Luis together, and now you get why Wednesday is Wednesday. It has to do with her parents.”

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As for the other members of the family, Fred Armisen makes a brief appearance as Uncle Fester, who was previously portrayed by Back to the Future star Christopher Lloyd.

However, it’s Wednesday who takes centre stage throughout the vast majority of the action, and Tim leapt at the chance to put his own stamp on the unconventional heroine.

“I particularly love Wednesday,” he added. “I’m obviously not a teenage girl.

“But I think in a past life I might have been a teenage girl because when I read this, I just felt like she shares my worldview.”

“That’s what I loved about what [creators] Alfred Gough and Miles Millar had written. I felt like they’d written it for me.

“It brought up those feelings that you have in school, about feeling strange and like you don’t fit into society and life. It just spoke very strongly to me on all of those levels.”

Jenna’s portrayal of Wednesday has already become some fans’ favourite interpretation of the character, so it’s hoped both the actress and director will reunite for a second season soon.

Wednesday is available to stream on Netflix.

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