In Hollywood, the phrase “It Girl” is often reserved for namesakes like Hadid, Jenner or Swift. Yet, a certain Latina ingenue by the name of Jenna Ortega has arrived and is redefining what that phrase means and more importantly – what it looks and feels like.
Who Is She?
Born in Coachella Valley in 2002, Jenna Ortega is a mere 21 years old. But if you think she’s a California valley girl. Think again! The daughter of mixed Mexican and Puerto Rican parents, Ortega is more of a child prodigy than suburban nepo baby. On the grind since nine years old. She started building her resume when she landed the role of Harley on the Disney Channel series “Stuck in the Middle”. A steady stream of commercial and television work would follow. Landing roles on show like “Jane the Virgin” as a Young Jane. As well as Darcy in the 2015 Netflix sitcom “Richie Rich.”
Over time the projects and roles got bigger and Ortega more than held her own. She was a scene stealer in the second season of the Netflix hit series “You”. Ortega also landed a co-starring role in the Scream reboot along-side Melissa Barrera.
But that was just the beginning – if you could believe that!
Why You Should Know Her
The breakthrough arrived in 2022. Ortega would appear in the Netflix series “Wednesday” in the titular role. The Addams Family spin-off, produced by Tim Burton focuses on the precocious daughter of the family. Not only does Ortega nail the role, but she’s created a viral sensation in the process. You can’t scroll Tik Tok or Instagram without coming across a fan recreating her now infamous dance scene in the series. In the process she nabbed herself a Golden Globe nomination for Best Actress in a Musical or Comedy TV Series.
However, it’s not just the on-screen work that’s garnered the attention of critics and fans alike. But rather her unapologetic approach in all that she stands for. Ortega makes it very clear to her audience that she is proud of her heritage and grateful for having the opportunity to share her culture with the world.
In a 2016 Pop Sugar interview, Jenna conveys that succeeding in the American film industry as a Latina was an uphill battle, throttled by subjective casting and strict ethnic guidelines followed in the early 2000s. Despite this difficulty, Ortega did not let cultural barriers and prejudice hinder her progress as a rising star.
Jenna Ortega is just getting started. First up, is her appearance in Scream 6 due out in March. Then, Netflix has greenlit Season 2 of “Wednesday” and another film Finestkind. Where she stars alongside Ben Foster and Tommy Lee Jones in the story of two brothers involved in an organized crime syndicate in Boston.
She’s not stopping at television and film. adidas recently announced that Ortega will be fronting the all-new label and its Spring Summer 23 collection. Cementing herself as a next generation icon.
On expanding beyond the screen and into fashion Ortega shared, “The way I express myself, whether this is vocally or aesthetically, is something I personally put a lot of energy into as I know how much power it can have in inspiring others. Embracing all that I am and all that I stand for continues to be a journey and through new experiences, I am learning and discovering more sides to myself. I am huge advocate of expressing all your different pursuits, passions, and traits, whether that is through what you do, what you wear or what you champion.”
If this is what the First Act of Jenna Ortega’s career and impact are. We can’t wait to see what’s in store for Acts Two, Three, Four….