Netflix’s Wednesday, which premiered in November 2022, has everything: a perfect Wednesday Addams (thank you, Jenna Ortega), a murder mystery, Addams Family references and of course, Thing. In case you don’t know, Thing is an Addams Family member with only one body part — his hand. No, seriously, he’s just a hand that walks and talks around with his fingers.
Throughout all of the Addams Family spinoffs from the 1960s to the 1990s, Thing has been there one way or another — either through special effects or a real actor’s hand. So, how did Wednesday do it? Keep reading to see how Wednesday filmed Thing’s scenes.
Who Plays Thing in ‘Wednesday’ On Netflix?
In addition to state-of-the-art visual effects by MARZ, Wednesday partly used a real actor for Thing! The actor’s name is Victor Dorobantu, who is actually a magician and illusionist, with Wednesday being his first acting credit. Many times when you see Thing on your screen, it was actually Victor in a full-body blue suit doing all of the hand movements.
How Were Thing Scenes Filmed in ‘Wednesday’?
Executing Thing took “well over a year” from start to finish, Lon Molnar, co-president of MARZ, exclusively told J-14.
“A lot of these shots are fully CG. Knowing that while we were early in the process, we knew that we had our hands full — so I say tongue in cheek,” Lon explains. “We had to make Thing look real and it was going to be scrutinized, it was gonna be right in front of the camera. It was gonna be cutting back and forth with a live-action hand. We had to make sure everything was going to look perfect.”
As far as how CG shots of Thing turned out so life-like, the team at MARZ used “motion capture gloves” and other innovative software. “We had our animators working with the gloves and doing all sorts of, you know, performances with the gloves, walk cycles and whatnot,” Lon explained.
Speaking about filming with Victor and creating Thing, Jenna told Screen Rant, “Tim [Burton] wanted it to be an actual actor like they did in the ’90s films, so it was this magician named Victor.”
In the 1990s films, The Addams Family and Addams Family Values, Thing was played by Christopher Hart, also an actor and magician.
“He [Victor] would wear a full blue suit, and he would hide behind walls and underneath beds,” Jenna recalled. “Then they built this prosthetic on top of his hand so that it looked like a wrist knob, and he would walk around.”
Jenna explained that Wednesday producer/director Tim Burton really liked Victor’s mannerisms, and he would “spend hours in hair and makeup every day” just to get the hand on. The Disney alum further explained that if she ever filmed a take without Victor, there was a “stand-in hand” or she was “looking at nothing.” She said they “never did the tennis ball,” which is often used when filming with something that’ll be added in during post-production.
“At the end of every take, we would have to bring in these gray and silver balls and a color chart so that they could add CGI,” Jenna continued. “Those scenes always took longer because of that.”
Behind-the-Scenes Photos of Thing On ‘Wednesday’
Victor shared some behind-the-scenes photos of himself wearing the blue suit while acting alongside Jenna via Instagram following the show’s premiere. Some of those photos went viral on Twitter. One user wrote alongside one of his pics, “Absolutely obsessed that this is how they filmed thing in Wednesday on Netflix.” Same.
Let’s give a hand to the crew of Wednesday!
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