Jenna Ortega has decided not to reprise her role as Tara Carpenter for Scream VII. According to multiple reports, Ortega’s departure from the upcoming film was in the works months ago before the SAG-AFTRA strike began.
Per Deadline, a source shared that because Scream VII doesn’t have a script yet, scheduling for filming would clash with Ortega’s projects going back into production now that the SAG strike is over. The Primetime Emmy nominee is already back on set to finish filming Beetlejuice 2, and meet the film’s Labor Day theatrical release. In April, she’ll travel to Ireland to begin shooting season 2 of Netflix’s Wednesday series, which is expected to go on into the summer.
The news of Ortega’s exit comes a day after Spyglass Media confirmed its firing of star Melissa Barrera — who appeared as Samantha Carpenter in 2022’s Scream and Scream VI — after she advocated for a ceasefire in Gaza. Barrera has spent the past month and a half showcasing her support for the Palestinian cause and sharing information about the situation in Gaza, including re-sharing Instagram posts and articles describing Israeli forces’ attacks as “genocide and ethnic cleansing” and referring to Israel as a “colonized land.”
In October, Barrera posted on her Story a sign that read “I too come from a colonized country” alongside the Mexican flag logo. “Palestine WILL be free,” the post continued with an italicized quote, “They tried to bury us, they didn’t know we were seeds.”
“Western media only shows the [Israeli] side. Why do they do that, I will let you deduce for yourself,” she wrote in one post on the social media platform, which some have interpreted as reaffirming antisemitic tropes about those of the Jewish faith running Hollywood.
In a statement to ET, a Spyglass spokesperson said: “Spyglass’ stance in unequivocally clear: We have zero tolerance for antisemitism or the incitement of hate in any form, including false references to genocide, ethnic cleansing, Holocaust distortion or anything that flagrantly crosses the line into hate speech.”
Barrera had previously spoken out against antisemitism. “It is important for me to clarify that when I say Free Palestine,” she posted on Instagram on Oct. 27, “I do not in any way mean: Kill all Jews.” She added that she wanted freedom and safety for Palestinians and Jews around the world.
A comprehensive look at many of Barrera’s posts about the ongoing conflict was documented in screenshots posted to X, featured below.
During Hamas’ Oct. 7 attack, some 1,200 Israelis were killed and 240 citizens were taken hostage. In response, the Israeli government retaliated by launching coordinated attacks and bombings in Gaza, resulting in the deaths of more than 11,000 people.
On Sunday, UN Secretary-General António Guterres called for a ceasefire in a statement while discussing the death toll in the region. “This war is having a staggering and unacceptable number of civilian casualties, including women and children, every day,” Guterres said. “This must stop. I reiterate my call for an immediate humanitarian ceasefire.”
On Wednesday, it was announced that Israel and Hamas agreed to a four-day, temporary ceasefire. Per NBC News, the agreement will see to the release of at least 50 Israeli hostages in exchange for at least 150 Palestinian hostages held in Israeli jails. The deal, brokered by Qatar, Egypt and the U.S., is set to go into effect as early as Thursday, and will also allow humanitarian aid and fuel into the besieged Gaza Strip.