Movie Reviews

Jenna Ortega Will NOT Replace Rachel Zegler As Snow White: The Internet Rumor Explained

a collage of rachel zegler jenna ortega and snow white from disney s 1937 snow white and the seven dwarfs

While Disney’s Snow White has been mired in controversy since it was first announced, the internet rumor that Jenna Ortega will be replacing Rachel Zegler as the titular princess is completely false. Releasing on March 21, 2025, Snow White is one of Disney’s many live-action remakes of their animated classics. Game of Thrones actor Peter Dinklage has been vocal in his criticism of the Snow White fairytale as a “backward story”. While Disney has gone on record that their film will be respectful of the dwarfism community, the Snow White criticisms don’t end there.

Rachel Zegler skyrocketed to fame in 2021 with her film debut as Maria in West Side Story. She was then cast as the lead in the Hunger Games prequel, and is clearly adept at playing young characters thrust into a new world of danger, like Snow White. Unfortunately, internet trolls criticized Disney casting an actor of Latin descent in the role of a princess whose skin is traditionally described as “white as snow“. These naysayers are definitely in the minority, and with Jenna Ortega also being Latina, the replacement rumor didn’t stem from this controversy. So, where did it come from?

The Jenna Ortega-Rachel Zegler casting rumor was likely a result of Zegler’s comments criticizing the 1937 Snow White movie. In an interview with Variety, Zegler was emphatic that her new Snow White is not a girl waiting to be saved by the prince or swooning about true love, but rather a leader with agency. The actor said:

Zegler was also critical of the original Prince Charming, saying, “He literally stalks [Snow White].” This led to a backlash, with many wondering if Disney would fire Zegler for her vocal disdain for their first animated feature. Zegler’s departure from Paddington 3 also played a role in speculation that her remarks may have gotten her blackballed from Hollywood.

Ortega entered the mix in October 2023 when TikTok account @Celebrity_Corner uploaded a now-unavailable three-part post series stating that Ortega was in the midst of reshoots for Snow White (as reported by Inside the Magic). The TikTok posts cited Disney’s concern that Zegler’s would result in another “bad box office flop” as the reason for the alleged replacement.

Inside the Magic also reported on the TikTok account’s claims that Ortega was “appreciative” of the opportunity, and Disney’s official recasting announcement would come with the trailer drop. A video titled “Jenna Ortega EXCITED to REPLACE Rachel Zegler From Snow White” also shared positive fan response to the rumor. But whether people wanted Ortega to replace Zegler or not, there’s no merit to the rumor, and Zegler will remain as Snow White.

Even if Disney did want to hire Jenna Ortega for a last-minute project, Snow White or not, they’d have to contend with a very busy schedule, as Ortega is highly in demand. The actress shot to the top of the A-list with performances in horror franchises Scream and X, solidifying her as a Gen Z scream queen, and she became a household name with younger audiences for her performance as the titular Addams Family antiheroine in Netflix’s Wednesday series.

Ortega isn’t currently filming anything new, but according to her IMDb page, she has a whopping six projects in post-production. The buzziest by far are Wednesday season 2 and Beetlejuice Beetlejuice, the long-anticipated sequel to Tim Burton’s hit 1988 comedy, in which she plays Astrid Deetz, the daughter of Winona Ryder’s Lydia, who was a teenager in the original film. Ortega’s other upcoming films are Winter Spring Summer or Fall, Klara and the Sun, Death of a Unicorn, and an untitled movie from The Weeknd and Trey Edward Shults.

Ortega is excellent in any movie or TV show she appears in, but Disney struck gold with nabbing Rachel Zegler for Snow White. However, the studio would do well to keep Jenna Ortega‘s name in mind for future projects, as she would make an excellent Disney princess — or villain.

Sources: Inside the Magic