Producer apologizes for calling Jenna Ortega “toxic” over her ‘Wednesday’ comments


Steven DeKnight, a producer with credits including Buffy the Vampire Slayer and Netflix’s Daredevil, is walking back comments he made last week regarding Wednesday star Jenna Ortega.

As reported, Ortega appeared on Dax Shepard‘s Armchair Expert podcast and explained she was “protective” of her title character, Wednesday Addams, to the point of being “almost unprofessional” on the set of the Netflix hit when it came to changing lines and questioning the character’s motives in the script. “I don’t think I’ve ever had to put my foot down more on a set in a way that I had to on Wednesday,” she said in part.

DeKnight took to Twitter last Tuesday to call the comments “beyond entitled and toxic.” He added, “I love her work, but life’s too short to deal with people like this in the business.”

He also tweeted, “She’s young, so maybe she doesn’t know any better (but she should). She should also ask herself how she would feel if the showrunners gave an interview and talked about how difficult she was.”

However, on Wednesday, DeKnight backpedaled, explaining of Jenna in part, “She’s an amazing talent. It was just an unfortunate situation to expose creative differences publicly, and also I’ll admit that writers are on edge because of the impending strike, myself included. A perfect storm.”

He also expressed “over and over” that Ortega is “fantastic,” adding of his comments, “It was an unfortunate gaffe to say that publicly. We’ve all had them. Learning experience for everyone. Me included.”

As one might have guessed, Jenna’s legions of fans didn’t accept the quasi apology, with many expressing sentiments similar to this user‘s: “No, you attacked her for speaking her mind…But you keep defending your attack on a young, woman, of color.”

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