Back in November, we learned that a live-action TV series centered around the character of Wednesday Addams (a moody member of the eccentric Addams Family) was in the works from director Tim Burton. At the time, no streaming or network was attached...until today when Netflix decided to scoop up the macabre project with an eight-episode order, the streamer announced Wednesday afternoon.
Well played, Netflix. Well played, indeed.
Described as a "coming-of-age story," the series will follow Wednesday as she attempts to solve a "supernaturally infused mystery" during her time as a student at Nevermore Academy. While Burton has directed pieces of television in the past, his presence on the small screen has been few and far between. In fact, his last TV effort — The World of Stainboy — was about 20 years ago and as such, Netflix is framing this show (simply titled Wednesday) as his first genuine foray into boob tube territory.
Wednesday hails from showrunners Al Gough and Miles Millar, both of whom served as writers on Smallville.
"When we first heard Al Gough and Miles Millar’s pitch for Wednesday we were struck, like an arrow from a crossbow, right in our hearts. They nailed the tone, the spirit and the characters, but gave us a fresh way into this story," Teddy Biaselli, Netflix's head of original series, wrote in a corporate blog post. "The upcoming eight-episode series is a sleuthing, supernaturally infused mystery charting Wednesday’s years as a student at the peculiar Nevermore Academy. Wednesday's attempts to master her emerging psychic ability, thwart a monstrous killing spree that has terrorized the local town, and solve the supernatural mystery that embroiled her parents 25 years ago — all while navigating her new and very tangled relationships of the strange and diverse student body."
Over the years, Wednesday has been portrayed by a variety of different actresses across a wide spectrum of different mediums. Lisa Loring (the '60s-era TV show), Christina Ricci (Barry Sonnenfeld's two film adaptations released in 1991 and 1993 respectively), Debi Derryberry (the '90s-era cartoon on ABC), Rachel Potter (the 2011 Broadway stage musical), and Chloe Grace Moretz (2019's animated movie) are among the list of performers to have occupied the iconic and goth-adjacent role.
"Tim has had a history of telling empowering stories about social outsiders like Edward Scissorhands, Lydia Deitz, and Batman. And now he brings his unique vision to Wednesday and her spooky classmates at Nevermore Academy," added Biaselli.