Lisa Loring died at the age of 64. She was best known for her role as Wednesday Addams in the sitcom The Addams Family. The gifted performer died after three days on life support due to a major stroke caused by high blood pressure.
Loring’s agent, Chris Carbaugh, confirmed the information in a statement to CNN. “She brought to life one of the most enduring figures in Hollywood history,” says Carbaugh. “Lisa loved telling stories about her past and interacting with her global fan base.” Jenna Ortega, who just updated her website on Wednesday for a new generation, is undoubtedly one of her fans.
Despite the recent attention Ortega has received for her portrayal of the pigtail-wearing character, Loring was the one who created the role in the first place. Before she appeared in the classic sitcom, Wednesday was a nameless character in a newspaper cartoon. Loring gave Wednesday life, as well as the sardonic delivery and brooding personality that made her famous.
Over the years, actors have imitated the legendary character, drawing inspiration from Loring’s portrayal. Ortega and Christina Ricci, who played Morticia Addams in the films The Addams Family and Addams Family Values, developed a dry, sardonic delivery style for their lines. Their clothing was frequently a nod to Loring’s creation of the renowned figure.
But Ortega also paid another moving tribute to Loring. Viewers of the Netflix series Wednesday are probably familiar with the scene in which Wednesday busts a move at the Rave’N school dance. Ortega, it turns out, choreographed it herself.
She drew inspiration for her choreography from various sources but also made sure to pay homage to Loring in her performance. In the original sitcom, Wednesday, played by Loring, can be seen dancing by doing a cute leg shuffle. Ortega made sure that her Wednesday performed the same special dance.
Ortega discussed the dance on The Tonight Show, Starring Jimmy Fallon, saying, “I knew there were certain things I wanted to perform.”
By doing so, I paid tribute to Lisa Loring, the original Wednesday Addams. I tried to imitate her shuffle a little bit. They stopped recording when I did it, but it still exists! I’m sure it is!
The unique maneuver is undoubtedly there for keen Wednesday fans to see. It’s admirable that Ortega honored the woman who started it all, even though she may have given the pigtailed avatar to a new generation.
Ortega’s character would not be able to exist like she does without Loring. The gifted actor undoubtedly contributed to giving a character that continues to captivate viewers decade after decade some life. Family, friends, and admirers all agree that Loring will be sorely missed.