Jenna Ortega Leaves Scream 7, Movie Getting Canceled?

By Sckylar Gibby-Brown | Published

Scream 7 might be getting canceled now that both of the movie’s stars are no longer associated with the project. An exclusive release from the trades reports that Jenna Ortega has cut ties with the horror movie sequel, though her resignation has nothing to do with her co-star Melissa Barrera getting fired from the project yesterday. 

Ortega, whose performance was pivotal in securing Scream 6 as the highest-grossing film in the horror franchise to date, is stepping away from Scream 7 due to scheduling conflicts with her commitment to the second season of Netflix’s Wednesday. This decision was apparently made before the recent actors’ strike and communicated to producers long before the script for the seventh Scream film would be drafted. With the next Scream installment still in early development, the news of Ortega’s absence adds one more layer of uncertainty to whether or not the seventhquel will actually get made.

Jenna Ortega in Scream
Jenna Ortega

The Wednesday star is set to head to Ireland in April to shoot the new season of the Netflix hit with a production schedule that is planned to extend into the summer. While this means the actress is unavailable to shoot Scream 7, it’s great news for fans of Tim Burton’s Addams Family series. The gothic teen drama spurred the take-off of Ortega’s career, earning the actress a Primetime Emmy nomination and a Golden Globe Comedy TV Actress nomination for her role as the titular Addams Family character.

While there’s no official word on the schedule for Scream 7, the franchise is poised to reach the $1 billion global box office mark with this seventh installment. That is, if the film can make it to theaters. Currently standing at $911 million through six films, it wouldn’t take much for the next movie to push the franchise over the billion-dollar mark.

Jenna Ortega and Mellissa Barrera
Jenna Ortega and Mellissa Barrera in Scream 6

While Ortega was a key part of Scream 6’s success, the franchise could carry on without her. However, with the recent development of losing Mellissa Barrera, Scream 7 is now without its two main actors featured in the most recent films. Unlike Ortega, Barrera’s departure from the franchise was not voluntary as Spyglass Media decided to part ways with the actress after her social media posts characterized Israel’s actions as genocide. 

Barrera’s strong statements on the Israel-Hamas conflict prompted Spyglass to emphasize their zero tolerance for antisemitism and hate speech, and the production company swiftly barred the actress from returning for more movies. Christopher Landon, the newly appointed director for Scream 7, expressed his sentiments on the matter with a now-deleted Tweet, stating, “This is my statement: 💔 Everything sucks. Stop yelling. This was not my decision to make.”

Scream 7’s production was already slowed by the 2023 SAG-AFTRA strike and the 2023 Writers Guild of America strike. Now, the departure of key cast members raises questions about the future of the iconic horror franchise. Currently, the film has not been officially canceled, and Paramount, the distributor for recent Scream installments, is expected to remain involved in the project.